What spring looks like in every state
What spring looks like in every state
Slowly but surely, Americans are shedding their coats and heading outdoors to embrace the welcomed change of seasons as spring unfolds around the country. Using historical weather data and various event listings, we’ve gathered 50 different looks at spring around the country.
Average spring temperatures throughout the U.S. fluctuate dramatically, from a brisk 24.7 degrees Fahrenheit in Alaska to a balmy 69.9 degrees Fahrenheit in Florida. Across the whole country, the average spring temperature sits at 52 degrees Fahrenheit. Depending on where you live, spring temperatures may mean a long-awaited thaw, buds appearing on trees, or the familiar sound of songbirds returning for the season.
From wildflowers in Texas to the New York Yankees’ first pitch in the Big Apple, here’s how every state rings in spring.
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Spring in the Yellowhammer State means lots to celebrate: temperatures are in the pleasant low 70s as spring-breakers flock to the Gulf Coast’s beaches. Meanwhile, inland, spring means the arrival of fresh berries and their accompanying festivals, including the annual Eufaula Pilgrimage in the town’s historic mansions and private homes that open their doors to the public.
Alaska doesn’t see spring until much later than its mainland neighbors—the season officially begins in late May or June. But once it does, visitors find fewer crowds than in summer, unmelted glaciers, and the beginnings of the lush green scenery the state is known for.
With more than 300 days of sun per year, it’s easy to assume that all seasons look alike in Arizona. In fact, spring offers notably cooler temperatures from the oppressive heat of summer. Both flora and fauna are out in full force, as migratory birds such as sandhill cranes pass through the state and everything from cactus blossoms to citrus orchards show off their fragrant blooms.
Jump-start spring with a visit to a spring! The Natural State is famous for Hot Springs National Park, the nation’s only national park located within city limits. Spring makes a perfect time to bathe in the healing waters as well as enjoy a hike to the Hot Springs Mountain Tower for a 360-degree view of the Ouachita Mountains.
While California’s weather is generally good year-round, a spring visit means that the coastal areas will mostly be fog-free and wildflowers will be in full bloom. With the exclusion of spring break, spring means that some of the state’s most popular destinations, such as San Francisco or Yosemite National Park, will have fewer crowds than summer and also be less expensive.
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After the end of ski season, tourism in Colorado dies down until summer, but spring is a great time to visit. Average high temperatures range from the mid 50s to low 60s (ideal for hikers) and flowers are everywhere. Take time to admire the tulips at Boulder’s Pearl Street Mall.
While the weather can be hit-or-miss—sunny days can give way to dreary and cold, rainy ones—spring is still a great time to visit Connecticut’s many historic homes or the waterfront Olde Mistick Village.
Delaware’s colonial past is at the forefront in the spring, as the state hosts numerous festivals and events dedicated to its heritage. Dover Days is perhaps the most popular, with maypole dancing on Dover's Green, historic wartime reenactments, a Civil War-era baseball game, and more than 300 vendors of everything from food to crafts.
Florida is generally hot and humid year-round, but spring brings a slight break in the mugginess. For much of the season, the state is overrun with spring breakers who flock to white sand beaches on the Gulf Coast or to inland attractions like Disney World.
The perfect spring weather in this Southern state is hard to resist. It’s no surprise that Georgia is host to a number of popular spring festivals, but two favorites are the annual Atlanta Dogwood Festival and the famous Macon Cherry Blossom Festival, both of which pay tribute to the season.
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Spring is one of the best times to visit Hawaii, as the crowds are thinner, the ocean is calmer, and flowers are putting on a dazzling show. Hilo’s Merrie Monarch Festival, held April 1-7, is a week-long festival honoring King David Kalākaua and a popular event for visitors.
March is the peak of ski season in Idaho, as resorts such as Sun Valley and Coeur d’Alene are bustling, but April and May brings nice weather and fewer crowds to the state. Spring is the perfect time to visit the state’s Lava Hot Springs, famous for five hot pools where temperatures range from 102 to 112 degrees.
Chicago’s vibrant Riverwalk bustles in spring, once winter’s frigid temperatures have moved on. A bit further afield, Rockford’s Anderson Japanese Gardens are at their best during the season, and with average temperatures in the 60s, it’s perfect for exploration.
Indiana’s unexpected natural beauty shines in spring. May brings the Quilt Gardens, an annual event in Elkhart County where exhibitors create impressive thematic quilted flower designs.
Even though 93% of the state’s landscape is dedicated to farmland, Iowa has a number of natural wonders that are worth a bit of springtime exploration. Visit the Kuehn Conservation Area, an 800-acre preserve along the Raccoon River, for short hiking trails, natural prairie, and geological formations.
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Even though spring in Kansas brings about mild temperatures that are perfect for outdoor activities, there’s plenty going on inside too. The Wichita Art Museum opens for spring break “artcation” for several days every March, allowing youngsters to enjoy the museum and specially curated activities for deeply discounted admission.
Spring in the Bluegrass State means lush pastures, full of brand new Thoroughbred foals. That makes it prime time for visiting the state’s Kentucky Horse Park, a 1,224-acre park and working farm dedicated to all things equine.
The state’s rich musical history means lots of great springtime festival dedicated to jazz, Cajun, zydeco, and everything in between. The perennial favorite is the Festival International de Louisiane, a free festival in Lafayette that celebrates south Louisiana's French cultural heritage.
After brutally cold winters, Mainers love celebrating the arrival of spring in their state. One Maine tradition: the Cornville 10-Mile Yard Sale, held each May. Yes, it is what it sounds like—and it’s an antiquer’s dream (plus a great way to spend some time outdoors).
Maryland is home to many spectacular gardens, all of which are stunning once the last frost has retreated. Take in 80,000 tulips at Baltimore’s Sherwood Gardens, where peak bloom typically occurs the last week of April through the first week in May.
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Spring is a favorite season for many in Massachusetts: The first beach-goers hit the sand in Cape Cod, flowers bloom in the Back Bay, the city’s famed marathon runs through the streets, and, most importantly for some, the first pitch is thrown at Fenway Park.
Even though Michigan’s spring temperatures are still mild, Michiganders look forward to the season with open arms. One reason? The state’s pristine waterways once again flow with plentiful fish. The opening day of trout season is the last Saturday of April, and the National Trout Festival in Kalkaska is a perfect way to kick things off.
Even though March typically ushers in spring for much of the country, temperatures in Minnesota can still remain below freezing. One of the state’s best spring-time events is Art in Bloom. Held annually at the Minneapolis Institute of Art, floral artists are invited to interpret works from the museum’s permanent collection in a series of more than 150 arrangements.
Mississippi’s weather is largely warm and humid year-round, and spring is no exception. The nice weather means the state plays host to a number of different festivals throughout the season, such as the Juke Joint Festival, which is dedicated to all Delta blues performers who have passed away during the prior year.
Spring in Missouri is typically the state’s wettest season, which makes it a great time to visit Branson. Enjoy the city’s famous live shows, or the Silver Dollar City amusement park.
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Spring in Montana is stunning. Yes, there’s still the chance of a freak late-season snowstorm, but the glaciers are dazzling and the air is crisp and clean, making it a perfect season to enjoy fishing, hiking, and a multitude of other outdoor activities.
Nebraska’s expansive prairies are lovely during spring and the state’s Bison Trail makes for a great hike, but beware of the many severe thunderstorms (and possible tornadoes) that roll through the state around this time of year.
March and April in Nevada are very pleasant, with temperatures in the 70s and lots of sun. The spring season is perfect for visiting Las Vegas as the nice weather makes walking the strip bearable and the crowds are smaller.
Claude McKay’s famed poem speaks of spring in the Granite State. As the days warm, nights remain chilly, which makes spring the perfect time for maple syrup: Hampshire Maple Month starts mid-March when more than 60 sugar houses open to the public to show the maple-sugaring process.
It isn’t called the Garden State for nothing. Spring brings about loads of lush greenery and fragrant blossoms, but it also marks locals return to the state’s beaches. Boardwalks from Atlantic City to Asbury Park are full once again as the temperatures rise.
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What better spring activity in New Mexico than visiting a spring? Ojo Caliente Mineral Springs Resort & Spa is a perfect activity for the season, when the surrounding wildflowers are in bloom.
New Yorkers love shedding the last vestiges of winter and enjoying spring in their city. In addition to copious colorful tulips, spring in the Big Apple also means the first pitch at Yankee Stadium, the Easter Parade, and the ever-present possibility of a freak March or April snowstorm.
With more than 400 courses, golf is a natural springtime activity in the Tar Heel State. Temperatures typically hover in the high 60s or low 70s, creating perfect days for teeing off at Pinehurst or another one of the state’s storied courses.
Rapid change is afoot in North Dakota during spring. By late March, the last snows have melted away and fertile soil and rich greenery takes its place; however, temperatures still hover in the low 50s (and cooler at night!) so don’t forget to pack a sweater.
During spring, the Butterfly Garden at the Oklahoma City Zoo comes to life as hundreds of the colorful insects flit about the zoo’s 20,000-square-foot exhibition. If you wish to be outdoors for your butterfly fix, the Pontotoc Ridge Preserve, in Roff, Oklahoma, has documented nearly 100 species.
Oregon’s known for rain showers and spring is no exception, but the season does bring about plenty of dry, sunny days, which are perfect for admiring the azaleas, cherry trees, and roses that bloom in the city’s park. The Portland Japanese Garden is especially stunning in spring, with lush greenery and delicate blossoms adorning the trees.
Pennsylvania’s scenic Allentown Rose Garden is a perfect spring destination. Best during late spring and early summer, this old-fashioned garden has walking paths, a jogging trail, and idyllic ponds that could be lifted right out of "Alice in Wonderland."
Spring in the Ocean State can still be a bit windy and chilly, but it’s a great time to get outside and explore. One favorite destination is the Hope Street Farmers Market, where shoppers can buy everything from fresh greens and eggs to local shellfish.
Even though the state is known for heat and high humidity, springtime in South Carolina offers a bit of reprieve, making it the perfect season to explore the state’s numerous historic sites, ranging from Fort Sumter to Charles Towne Landing State Park.
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Local wildlife and wildflowers come out in full-force during spring in South Dakota. The temperatures can vary widely, ranging from 40 degrees to 80 degrees, but spring is still a perfect time to explore Badlands National Park and other monuments.
The Music City lights up in April as Nashville hosts a different major event each weekend. Big-name songwriters flock to the city to perform, but events like the Cherry Blossom Festival and the Nashville Film Festival mean there’s a lot more going on than just tunes.
The Lone Star State is beautiful at this time of year ahead of summer’s oppressive heat and thunderstorms. Visitors flock to the state’s Hill Country, where fields of wildflowers, especially bluebonnets, cover the rolling landscape.
One of Utah’s most popular seasons, spring attracts visitors who love the appeal of skiing fresh powder in the morning and enjoying a round of golf or a hike in the afternoon. The weather is also perfect for exploring the state’s myriad national parks, including the famous Arches.
Spring in Vermont means one thing: maple syrup! The state produces more than 50% of the country's maple syrup and that production kicks into high gear in the spring months.
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Each spring, the state welcomes visitors to more than 250 of Virginia's most beautiful gardens, homes, and historic landmarks during Historic Garden Week. The event was started in 1927 when the Garden Club of Virginia hosted a flower show and raised $7,000 to protect trees.
Early spring is a great time for scenic hikes to take in the state’s blooming wildflowers. Then, just a few weeks later, Puyallup hosts the state’s largest celebration of spring: the Washington State Spring Fair.
Wisconsin residents know it’s spring when the first tulips begin to peek through the snow—and what better place to catch a glimpse than the state’s many botanical gardens? The garden at the University of Wisconsin-Madison is home to more than 500 species representing 100 families and 40 taxonomic orders of plants from all over the world, and Milwaukee's Mitchell Park Horticultural Conservatory—known by locals as the "Three Domes"—shows off plants both inside and out, as well as hosting spring events.
Wyoming still has plenty of snow on the ground come spring, but that makes it the perfect spot for a late-season skiing or snowshoeing trip. Eventually, snow begins to melt and birds, flowers, and wildlife—including adorable baby bison—dot the landscape.
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