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Sunny skies mean playtime

The end of March brought mild weather, coaxing blooms from plants, and children and adults alike to get out there for the first taste of spring
by: Matthew Ginn, Christina Brown, 12, of Gresham, enjoyed Thursday afternoon’s sunshine by riding her bike through Blue Lake Regional Park.

After a rainy start to spring break, by mid-week, parents could order their kids to put down those video game controllers and go outside, as March went out like a lamb in East Multnomah County.

Temperatures stayed in the 50s during the days, and the sun positively blazed through windows on Thursday and Friday mornings. By mid-week, people could be seen wearing shorts and T-shirts. Some trees and plants began blossoming.

And the weather should keep getting better, according to Charles Dalton, a meteorologist intern with the National Weather Service Forecast Office in Portland.

'You certainly can have extended rainy periods this far into the year, certainly into April,' he says. However, raindrops will generally stop falling on our heads soon, he says.

According to data from the National Weather Service Web site, this year's spring break weather - when temperatures hit a high of 69 degrees on Thursday - is somewhat comparable to temperatures the same time last year.

Daytime temperatures during the last week of March 2006 were in the 50s and 60s.

A little more than half an inch of rain fell during that time, whereas less than half an inch fell between Sunday and Thursday of this week.