WEATHER: Open shelters; school, office closures

Last Updated: Wednesday, January 03, 2018, 6:56 AM EST

With forecasters calling for freezing rain or a wintry mix from just north of Central Florida to the Panhandle, several school districts and public offices announced closures this week, and shelters have opened.

School districts, universities

Gov. Rick Scott urged families to be prepared for severe weather that is expected to move through the Panhandle and north Florida overnight. The governor directed state transportation workers to spray down state bridges and roads with a saline solution in anticipation of the storm.

More than 20 counties have or were planning to open cold weather shelters.

Schools in five districts have already announced they would be closed on Wednesday. The city of Jacksonville announced it was closing its offices out of an "abundance of caution."

  • Alachua County Public Schools: Closed Wednesday-Thursday, Jan. 3-4.
  • Leon County Public Schools: Closed Wednesday, Jan. 3.
  • Florida State University in Tallahassee: Campus will be closed Wednesday, Jan. 3, during the day but reopen after 5 p.m. Wednesday as conditions improve.
The Florida State University's main campus in Tallahassee is closed on Wednesday, Jan. 3, due to the threat of severe winter weather. Once conditions are expected to improve, normal operations will resume at 5 p.m., Wednesday.
 
All other FSU campuses will be open for business on Wednesday.  

Marion County

  • E.D. Croskey Recreation Center at 1510 NW 4th St. in Ocala: Will be closed from 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 2 through Friday, Jan. 5. Will reopen Monday, Jan. 8.

Theme parks, attractions

Shelters

Seminole County

  • The Rescue Outreach Mission, 1701 Historic Goldsboro Blvd., Sanford, opens Tuesday night, with hot meals at 5:30 p.m. The Rescue will take residents from 6-9 p.m. and will close at 7 a.m.
  • Seminole County library branches will be open during the day as daytime relief centers. Daytime relief centers are open Monday-Thursday, 9 a.m.-8 p.m. and Friday and Saturday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.

Orange County

  • Coalition for the Homeless, 639 W. Central Blvd., Orlando, will open beginning at 7 p.m. Wednesday and continue to Friday night.

Volusia County

  • St. Peter Catholic Church, 359 W. New York Ave., DeLand, will be open beginning at 8 p.m. Wednesday.