If you think you're having a tough day at work, perhaps a look at the challenges facing the staff at Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historical Park will provide a little perspective.
Less than two weeks from now, arguably the biggest event in that park's history will occur—the February 12th commemoration of the bicentennial of Abraham Lincoln's birth. Planning and managing such celebrations are always a challenge in the best of times, especially for a small park with a limited staff and budget.
Unfortunately, thanks to Mother Nature, these aren't the best of times at the park or much of Kentucky.
A major ice storm which has hammered the region the past several days caused extensive damage in the park. Although park buildings appear to have escaped with minimal damage, there has been severe and extensive tree damage. More problems are likely, as daytime temperatures are not expected to rise above freezing until this afternoon, following a low last night of about 13º.
Due to the cold temperatures, the ice and snow coating trees is not melting, and increased wind speeds are predicted, putting even more limbs at risk. After a brief respite today, more snow is predicted Sunday night through Tuesday, hampering the start of clean-up.
Electrical outages are widespread and include the park, which remains closed. Trees that were planted in 2006 to restore the cultural landscape have been severely damaged, and it appears that it will not be possible to salvage many of them.
A major clean-up job lies ahead, with a deadline looming for the February 12th event, and due to the widespread nature of the storm, crews and equipment throughout the region will be in demand elsewhere.
I hope your weekend will be a bit better than the one facing the folks in Kentucky and surrounding areas!