MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — No matter how slow the drive or how much there is to shovel, many of us are thrilled to see the first big snow of the year.

In the Merriam Park neighborhood, lots of kids have convinced their parents to come outside and play with them.

And earlier on Wednesday, plenty of cross-country skiers were taking full advantage.

“Well, winter is coming, might as well have a lot of snow to play with, and it feels pretty good to be out here for the first time this year,” said Brian Isaacson.

For many, being on skis was a lot better than being behind the wheel.

“I was delighted,” Linda Stone said of the new snow. “Bring it on. Although, I wish the roads were a little bit better.”

Drew Holbrook coaches the high school Nordic ski team at Southwest High School in Minneapolis.

“This is awesome,” he said. “This is going to make our winter so much easier. Less expensive. More fun, because it’s actually winter.”

Wayne Iseri was enjoying the snow at Elm Creek Park Reserve.

“We’re geared up,” he said. “We’ve been waiting for this. And because Elm Creek is such a big destination for winter sports, we are just elated that it is here.”

He said the fact that it’s still falling only adds to the excitement.

“With all this great snow, you know what happens? All of the public now gets excited because now they are thinking snow,” he said. “Let’s go out and play, let’s go out and ski, let’s go out and slide.”

The texture of the snow is great for skiing and sledding — not too wet and slushy. And it’s not too windy or cold … yet.

Businesses selling winter gear are also enjoying the new snow — Hoigaard’s in St. Louis Park said shoppers were in and out of their store all day.