Spring officially arrived in South Jersey at 6:28 a.m. Monday, marking the end of a relatively easy winter that only brought one snowstorm to the area.

After constant shots of cold during the past few weeks, 50-degree weather returned, making for a sunny and seasonable start to spring.

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Signs of spring were everywhere.

Above left, local Rita’s owners Roseann Murphy, left, and Rose Fulginiti continued an annual tradition by giving away free water ice on the first day of spring, bringing crowds to the Northfield location. In Linwood, jogger Mary Fran Buckberg, right, of Northfield, jogged on the bike path near Wilson Avenue under the budding trees, top right.

And nice weather should continue. After a brief shot of cool for the middle of the week, the first 60-degree weather in more than two weeks is in the forecast for Saturday. See the complete forecast on D6.

The National Weather Service is forecasting warmer-than-average temperatures for the spring months of April, May and June, even though March has been cooler than average so far.

The warm February jump-started the spring pollen season a bit earlier than usual this year, although the constant cold of the past few weeks has kept the pollen in check. Forecasters expect pollen levels to rise steadily over the coming weeks, a sure sign of spring.

Contact: 609-272-7247 DSkeldon@pressofac.com Twitter @ACPressSkeldon

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