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Minnesotans Prepare For Winter As First Storm Nears

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) - With the first snowfall on the way, people are busy getting their gear ready.

From snow tires to snow boots, Saturday was a busy day of for families going store to store to make sure they have everything they need to be safe for Monday's storm.

"Today has been crazy," Guy Still of REI said. "I think everyone's seen the forecast, and they know the snow is coming, the cold weather's coming, so everybody is coming in."

Winter boots, hats, and gloves were flying off the shelves.

"The parking lot was super crowded, and it's been pretty busy in every little section of the store," REI customer Megan Benzick of Minneapolis said.

The most popular winter clothing item this year? BOGS, a waterproof winter boot that comes in a number of styles.

Tire shops were busy too, as customers came in droves to get their winter tires.

"Today has been pretty hectic," said Rich Fellers of Firestone Complete Auto Care in Minneapolis. "Probably a 30 percent increase over what we've experienced this last week just in getting ready for the forecasted snow."

Firestone was one of several auto shops across the Twin Cities staying open late to accommodate all of its customers.

"We're increasing our staffing and we've increased our inventory levels to accommodate the increased traffic getting ready for the winter season," Fellers said.

While things are likely to be hectic at shops again Sunday, it's better safe than sorry come Monday.

"I guess you're not fully always mentally prepared until it hits, and then you really have to be prepared," Benzick said.

Aside from having good tires, a few things you should keep with you throughout the winter season are a blanket, flashlight, snow scraper, shovel and extra windshield washer fluid.


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