Caroline O’Brien celebrated her 20th birthday this past weekend. It would have been the first birthday she spent with her girlfriend of just under a year, but because of this weekend’s blizzard, O’Brien’s birthday date had to be put on hold.
“We were going to get lunch [Saturday], going into the city, but that had to be cancelled,” said O’Brien, a sophomore psychology major.
“Because she commutes, I unfortunately wasn’t able to celebrate with my girlfriend,” O’Brien said.
Emma Palacio, O’Brien’s girlfriend, was at home when SEPTA shut down over the weekend due to the blizzard that dropped 22.4 inches of snow on Philadelphia, making it the fourth largest snowfall in Philadelphia history, according to 6ABC.
“I couldn’t get there because I live at home,” said Palacio, a sophomore architecture major. “It kind of sucks.”
SEPTA’s regional rail was suspended on Saturday, but the Market-Frankford and Broad Street Lines were still running.
“So basically if you didn’t live within walking distance of the Broad Street Line or Market-Frankford you were stuck,” Palacio said.
Although Palacio couldn’t make it to campus on Saturday, O’Brien still had friends over at night to celebrate with her. They hung out and ate pizza, O’Brien said.
“We had quite the adventure going to Philly Style,” O’Brien said. “It was very cold and very windy.”
Students who live on or near Main Campus found it difficult to travel during the snowstorm, and O’Brien wasn’t the only student snowed in on her birthday.
Tori Zienkiewicz, a junior kinesiology major, turned 21 last Friday, and she was forced to change her birthday plans.
“I went to a bar Thursday night into Friday morning, but other than that I did not go out at all this entire weekend, which was not the plan,” Zienkiewicz said.
Zienkiewicz tore her ACL during winter break and is still on crutches. She said she’s not sure how she will make it to classes or around campus with all the snow.
“I don’t know how I’m going to do it yet,” Zienkiewicz said. “It’s going to be very interesting.”
Natalie Crane, a freshman undeclared major, said the snow didn’t cause any trouble for her over the weekend.
“We mostly planned to stay in and watch movies,” Crane said.
“We knew that we were going to be stuck in so we planned to stay in,” Crane added. “We only could really eat in the Morgan dining hall, because we didn’t think we really wanted to trek across campus to anywhere else.”
Aria Principato, a junior economics major, also spent most of her weekend inside due to the snow.
“We stayed inside all day,” Principato said. “All we did is eat pizza.”
Principato is used to the snow, because she is from the Poconos, but like other students, she was surprised by the amount Philly received over the weekend.
“I didn’t think we would get as much they said,” Principato said.
“Whenever they make a forecast it’s always overpredicted and everyone just freaks out about it,” Palacio said. “I didn’t really think it was going to be this bad.”
Jennifer Roberts can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.