Rain dampens holiday plans, but delights farmers

Published 2:39 pm Tuesday, September 2, 2003

By By BEN RAYMOND LODE / Niles Daily Star
NILES -- A rainy Labor Day weekend probably put a damper on many peoples' typical holiday activities.
But the rain that did come down may have been a God-send for the soil here.
Herb Teichman, owner of Tree-mendous Fruit Farm in Eau Claire, said many people usually come to his fruit farm to pick peaches on Labor Day.
To some degree, therefore, he was disappointed with the rain because it provided less-than-ideal fruit picking conditions.
But although it rained on Labor Day, the people that turned up to pick fruit didn't let the rain stop them from having a good time, Teichman said.
Although Labor Day didn't have ideal picking conditions, Teichman said the rain wasn't all bad because he has been anxious to see some rain, especially after a rather hot and humid August.
With the rain also came cooler weather.
Teichman hopes it stays cool because the heat in the latter part of August has ripened too many of his peaches at the same time.
He said that can cause large amounts of fruit to get spoiled here because the fruit doesn't get picked soon enough.
Teichman, who runs a co-operative weather observatory and sends in monthly reports to a national weather observatory, said August, although hot and humid, had average rain fall at 3.04 inches.
He said the way the rain came down over the Labor Day weekend was good.
The fact that it drizzled and didn't pour, also saved City of Niles public works and utilities department workers from repairing any rain related damage over the Labor Day weekend.
Public Works director, Neil Coulston, said the rain drained well and probably wasn't heavy enough to cause any damage in the city.
He said no public works staff were called out over the weekend to fix water related damage.
Jim Lehmkuhl, Utilities Department manager, said he hadn't heard of any damage to the city's electrical system caused by the weekend's rain.
He said the nice drizzly rain was good for the soil, but not so good for the people who wanted to do outdoor activities on Labor Day.
Larry Lamb, Chief Niles City Fire Department, said the fire department responded to no calls related to damage caused by rain over the Labor Day holiday.