Pleasant weather draws people outdoors

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CHAMPAIGN COUNTY, Ill. (WCIA) — Today’s pleasant temperature is a welcome surprise on the day after Christmas.

“I don’t recall if it’s ever been this warm the day after Christmas up here,” said golfer Russ Proch.

You may have been dreaming of a white Christmas, but it looks like Santa had something different this year.

“We didn’t think we’d get another game in before next spring, but we were able to get one in,” said golfer Mike Brandt.

These golfing buddies say they’re usually finished with their season long before now, but the abnormal warmth is giving them another chance to take a swing.

“Usually the end of October, rarely in November, hardly. I don’t ever remember playing December,” said Brandt.

By the end of the day, the University of Illinois golf course in Savoy says they saw almost 200 golfers. They say that number is closer to what they would normally see on a day in the spring.

For Rachel Lowery and her family, the change has added a new twist onto a holiday tradition of visiting Hardy’s Reindeer Ranch in Rantoul.

“We’ve been here before, and it’s been snowing and covered in inches of snow and we still come out here, so it’s been really nice out here today to watch the kids play,” said Lowery.

Owner Julie Hardy says the crowds were smaller compared to earlier this week, but today was a chance for visitors to enjoy some areas that are often dormant in the bitter cold.

“Normally this time of year, people don’t get to enjoy our play area and just be outside and enjoy the weather, so it’s kindof more pleasant for our staff and for us as well,” said Hardy.

Overall, most don’t have any complaints about getting a glimpse of springtime in December.

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