Parents, children head to mall to avoid cabin fever

OVERLAND PARK, Kan. - With so many children in the metro out of school because of the snow, parents spent Wednesday keeping them busy and entertained so some headed to the mall.

Oak Park Mall in Overland Park used two dozen crews to clear the snow overnight that made it easier for people to park and avoid cabin fever.

"We've been open since 10 this morning, as usual. We had some stores open later so that everyone can get here safely," Oak Park Mall Marketing Director Kasey Vena said.

Wednesday was the second snow day for Hayden Polese and his sisters Elaina and Samantha.

"I was like, ‘Yes we have a snow day, thank gosh!'" Hayden, a fourth-grader at the Barstow School, said.

Their mother Beth Gura, who's originally from Minnesota, brought them to the mall.

"We were all kind of going stir crazy so we decided to come to the mall and we had gift cards left from the holidays so we thought we'd use them," she said.

The Oak Park Mall and the metro's weather is quite different than what their family is used to after living in Singapore for two years.

"There was a place--like a mall--it was called Snow City and they would have fake snow and you play in it and act like it was winter," Hayden said.

But now in Kansas City, the Polese children are getting used to the snow, even assessing the snow texture of the latest storm.

"It was really fun to walk all over because when you put your foot in it goes straight through and it would be up to your ankle and it was really cool," Elaina, Hayden's 12-year-old sister said.

After a bite to eat at the mall's food court, the family planned to go sledding and catch up on homework.

"We kept putting it off, kept putting it off, so we'll be up until nine doing it tonight," Samantha, the oldest sister, said.

The Oak Park Mall is open daily until 9 p.m.

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