Northeast Ohio is famous (or infamous) for its temperamental weather—most notably its tendency to fluctuate between extremes in a matter of days. When it's hot, it's hot, and when it's cold, it's cold. Very cold. Autumn is arguably the most beautiful time on campus. The changing leaves, sweater weather, and back-to-school atmosphere are pervasive and infectious—people are out and about, and the setting is best described as "collegiate." The start of the winter season is usually marked by a decidedly thick blanket of white powder. This first snow causes a general excitement around campus, and students are apt to take a break from their studies and take part in sledding (there are some great hills), snowball fights, and other winter activities, at least for a few days. One of the enchanting sights you'll see is bundled-up students talking closely over mochas in the steamed windows of local coffee shops. However, they say that all good things must come to an end, and finals week brings a determined finale to winter fun. From there on out, the remainder of the season is generally considered something to be endured rather than enjoyed. As picturesque a scene as the snow provides, trudging through it in the bitter cold can lessen its charm.
Of course, the beauty of the weather is that when you are at your wits' end, the season changes. Spring comes faster than you'd think, and it feels good to shed the parka and play a game of Frisbee on one of the green spaces. Students come out of their rooms, and the campus is abuzz with excitement for the coming summer season. The weather can be unpredictable, so when packing, anticipate everything short of a hurricane. It's going to rain and snow a lot. A good rain jacket is a must, as are substantial winter boots. Above all, be prepared. It's easy to enjoy whatever the weather brings if you're ready for it.