Winter-like temperatures arrived abruptly over the weekend, breaking a streak of mild air that had dominated most of the autumn season.
Saturday night into Sunday marked the worst of the frigid temperatures.
Friday night into Saturday was not much better, with the temperature reading 27 degrees at 11 p.m. — only one degree higher than the following night would be.
Data from the Attleboro Water Department showed the weekend’s low temperatures in the low and mid-20s, with the warmest high recorded on early Sunday afternoon at 51 degrees.
Those temperatures were flirting with the record lows set in 1956 and 1992. Friday and Saturday’s temperatures of that year were 22 and 19 degrees, respectively.
In 1956, the record low for Sunday was 17 degrees, with this Sunday’s mercury standing only eight degrees higher.
The 11 students and three adult church leaders participating in the 12th annual Homeless Awareness event at the Evangelical Covenant Church were definitely aware of the frigid air mass directly over their heads, but the Rev. Chris Wall said there were no complaints.
“Even on Saturday morning, when the realization set in that they were going to be doing this for a second night, they were still excited and happy to be there,” Wall said.
Wall also said the students were skilled in the art of bundling up for the event, making sure they had on multiple layers of clothing and socks.
And knowing that while they had the option to go indoors for warmth, it was not necessarily so for the people the event was raising awareness about.
This aspect, Wall said, added to the event’s impact for the students and the community.
“(The cold air) was brutal, but the students were excited for the experience,” Wall said.
Over at Patriot Place, the Winter Skate opened for the season on Friday, to the delight of ice-skating aficionados near and far.
The skating rink, located near Bass Pro Shop, was still full of skaters Sunday afternoon, with slightly warmer temperatures.
Chris Campbell and Lori Cunningham’s 13-year-old daughter Ella Campbell was gliding happily around the rink during the entire weekend, starting with a winter jacket on Friday night to only a T-shirt on Sunday afternoon.
Ella began skating at five-years-old, and has enjoyed the Winter Skate for years as an opportunity to be with her friends and improving her skating techniques.
“If you fall, it’s funny, so it makes it less embarrassing,” she said.
Chris Campbell, who lives in Foxboro, described Friday night’s temperatures as “brutal” due to the wind chill.
But Campbell and Cunningham, an Easton resident, appreciated the skating rink as a fun activity for their five children to be outdoors.
“’Tis the season,” Cunningham remarked.
Another patron, Lori Leidner of Franklin, also enjoyed bringing her own daughter to the skating rink as part of the imminent winter season.
“In New England, it’s cold, and we’re cooped up a lot,” Leidner said. “It’s great to have things to do outdoors in the wintertime.”