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Warm weather helps grounds crew prepare for Relays ahead of schedule

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STORY BY JACOB BULLINGTON

Josh Tat (left) and Jack Bush work hard getting campus ready for Relays. PHOTO BY JOEL VENZKE | PHOTO EDITOR

Josh Tat (left) and Jack Bush work hard getting campus ready for Relays. PHOTO BY JOEL VENZKE | PHOTO EDITOR

With temperatures soaring into the high 60s and even peaking in the 70s this week, students are seemingly coming out of the woodwork and catching a few rays of sunshine.

In addition to students, the grounds crew and gardeners employed at Drake University are getting a chance to break out the shorts and T-shirts.

The recent weather has enabled staff such as gardener Aaron Harpold to get a start on their spring-cleaning and to enjoy getting back to work.

“I think (the weather) is fantastic,” Harpold said. “It makes me feel a little spirit inside.”

Grounds Manager Jeff Bosworth is also pleased by how this spring is turning out in their favor.

“It’s been good to get out and get some spring cleanups going,” Bosworth said. “I guess we always hope for this kind of weather, and we don’t always get it.”

“(The crew) is always working outside. I guess the big thing is they have got less clothes they have to wear,” Assistant Director of Facility Services John Selin said.

This heat wave, in comparison to years past, comes at a perfect time.

The staff was able to begin preparation for Relays, a “key time” for the crew, Selin said.

In addition to the above-average temperatures, Des Moines received a lot less snow in comparison to last year, allowing grounds crew staff to get a big jump on their work.

“…We’re getting into the landscape beds and the flower beds a little sooner than normal because a lot of times snow freezes down in those areas,” Selin said.

“That helps us get a little bit of a head start.”

“This weather probably puts us a good five days ahead of schedule,” Selin said.

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