Houston & Peach

Imported snow creates a little bit of holiday fun in Houston County

PERRY — It took little Nia about 150 seconds to recover from the sting in her temple, form her next ball of ice and return to the danger zone Saturday afternoon.

Sure, that last hit had produced a few tears.

But the Maryland native wasn’t going down against a team of Middle Georgians — many of whom had never even seen the white stuff before.

The 8-year-old got a kiss from her mother, Adria Schneck-Scott, and with the help of a younger brother and sister pepped herself up a bit.

She warmed her digits, fixed her skullcap and went back out to the snow day, a bed of fluff layered atop the old Perry courthouse lawn.

Immediately, the mix of winter white ice, children’s squeals and her own rush of adrenaline whisked Nia away.

She was back in the game, back in the snowball fight.

Now, the snow didn’t actually fall from the sky and the kids who played in it didn’t seem to mind.

It was brought exclusively to the downtown square by members of the Perry Downtown Development Association.

A large machine drove up on the grass and sprayed it white. From 2 to 4 o’clock, there was snow.

“I’m impressed,” Schneck-Scott said. “It’s real.”

The Scotts recently moved from Glenn Dale, near Washington, D.C., to Kathleen. Nia’s father, Ross Scott, is a teacher and coach at Hawkinsville High School.

“We really were going to miss it back home,” she said.

The weekend holiday treat drew toddlers and teenagers.

Vicki Lee accompanied her 14-year-old daughter, Angel Jarriel, and her two school friends.

“I’ve got to stand back here and watch and be safe,” Lee said, looking on from about 15 feet away. “The big kids wanted to play too.”

She recalled when snow covered the ground in Perry when Angel was a young child.

“There was that little blizzard here and she was so excited. I have the pictures,” Lee said.

“After that, she would always ask, ‘Will it ever snow at Christmas?’”

Grace Chauta started off with snow angels Saturday, eventually joining the ice fight.

She said she had never touched snow before and her expectations were met.

“I guessed it was going to be this cold,” the Houston County 9-year-old said.

Jeri Chauta, Grace’s mother, said her daughter would be writing to her brother, Shaun, about the experience. He’s stationed at Aviano Air Base in Italy, where he also likes to play in the snow, “mostly snowboarding.”

“I think it’s just the feeling of being in the cold and having a snowball fight and just the family time,” Chauta said. “It’s great.

Grace’s friend, 10-year-old Charlotte Pilcher, cheerily agreed and made sure to remind Grace of her mother’s only rule: hit below the neck.

To contact writer Ashley Tusan Joyner, call 744-4347.