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"Ear Muffs and Sliding Snow..."

1 year 9 months 3 weeks ago Saturday, December 28 2019 Dec 28, 2019 December 28, 2019 9:00 AM December 28, 2019 in Pat Shingleton Column

Chester Greenwood was cursed with ears that throbbed and ached anytime he was cold. His ears would change color when the temperature dipped below freezing, first turning pale white, then vivid red and finally blue.  Chester had no trouble doing chores when the weather was above freezing, but once the mercury dropped, he dropped inside to get next to the fire. Chester would wear a heavy towel around his head to protect his ears and when ice skating, he tied a scarf around his head; resulting in an unbearable itch. His doctor determined that his ears were allergic to wool and very sensitive to cold weather.  With some assistance from his grandmother, Chester solved the problem by looping two pieces of wire with fur sewn to the ends.  According to the United States Patent Office, he patented a device that included a steel band that secured the fur pads, and called it Greenwood's Champion Ear Protectors. He later formed the Greenwood Ear Protector Factory.  For 161 years they’ve been known as "ear muffs" and Chester's hometown of Farmington, Maine is recognized as the Earmuff Capital of the World.  The first Saturday in December celebrates his birthday, including an Ear Muff Parade. in closing, from cold ears to snow consequences. More snow this weekend in the Rockies will offer perfect ski conditions. There are two classifications of avalanches: loose snow and slab.  Loose snow avalanches are fairly minor and form when powder snow falls on mountain peaks and cascades down the slopes. This type of avalanche rarely causes casualties however slab avalanches are deadly. Slab avalanches can transport trees, rocks and other debris on their journey down the slope.  Temperature changes alternate the sequences of freezing and thawing within the snow-pack. This process also strengthens the snow pack during these periods of melting. Avalanches can occur at any time and are more numerous in spring when the entire structure releases from the slab.

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