PASADENA — Snow is a part of winter in many parts of the United States, but it's a distant reality in temperate areas of the country. In Pasadena, California, some children in the sun-drenched state are getting hands-on exposure to the frozen flakes, despite the warm weather.
It's a curious white substance, and it's cold. Many of these kids are having their first experience with snow, and a chance to make a snowman with their parents.
It's releasing her daughter's creativity, said Rong Liu. “She says, 'This is my first snowman. I'm excited.'”
As a child, Liu knew snow in her native China, but this is all new to her daughter, a Californian.
On each of five "snow days" at the Kidspace Children's Museum, there are stories related to snow, an ice fishing game, experiments with dry ice, and an explanation of the science behind precipitation.
The snow arrives each day, just before the museum opens its doors.
Then come the families. Those who have been here before bring warm gloves and sweaters.
The museum's Julianne Sando said the kids can create make-believe worlds, the way kids do in northern climates.
“They learn how to make a snowball, they maybe throw a snowball for the first time, they realize how slippery and cold snow is. So it's just a lot of exploration and interaction with snow,” she said.
That's something California kids seldom experience, which is just fine with Michael Sullivan, a parent.
“It's fun to come and visit, and play in the snow, but to live in it and drive in it every day, like some people do, that's not what I'd like to do," he said.
He said a few days of snow are more than enough for California.