Predictions of a rare East Texas snow event came true on Sunday as flakes began falling in the afternoon and picked up as the sun started to set prompting some school districts to alter Monday schedules.

Flurries began at about 1:30 p.m. before turning to sleet and back to snow within an hour. Snow started sticking on grassy areas by 3 p.m. Sunday and is expected to accumulate into Monday morning.

About 2 to 4 inches of wet, heavy snow is expected throughout the Longview area. The entire East Texas region could see isolated accumulation totals as low as 1 inch and as high as 5 inches.

In the Spring Hill area, 15-year-old Jared Welch and his friend Trevor West, 13, took advantage of the weather to have a snowball fight. In downtown Longview, people could be seen stopping by Heritage Plaza for the rare opportunity to take pictures in the falling snow.

A winter storm warning will remain in effect until 8 a.m. Monday, according to the National Weather Service.

“The hazardous conditions could impact the morning commute,” NWS Shreveport said in a statement. “If you must travel, keep an extra flashlight, food, and water in your vehicle in case of an emergency.”

The storm should leave the area by Monday morning turning into a partly sunny day with a high of 43 degrees. Though snow should begin to melt, there could be a refreeze of snow melt as temperatures drop to 26 degrees Monday night.

Texas Department of Transportation crews pretreated area roadways and are using shift work for response to winter storm conditions. I-20 and many other roadways were pretreated with brine, a salt water solution, TxDOT said in a release.

Those conditions could affect roads and drivers through at least Monday afternoon. Slushy snow-covered bridges, overpasses and roads are expected.

While the best course of action is to stay home, TxDOT is reminding drivers to slow down and leave more space between vehicles. Approach bridges, overpasses and turns slowly as well.

A handful of area school districts on Sunday afternoon began making changes as the snow continued to fall.

Closings and delays for Monday, Jan. 11:

School delays/closings

Big Sandy ISD: Closed

Christian Heritage Classical School: Closed

Gladewater ISD: Closed

Hallsville ISD: Closed

Kilgore ISD: Closed

Longview ISD: Closed

Longview Christian School: Closed

Marshall ISD: Closed

New Diana ISD: Two-hour delay

Overton ISD: Closed

Panola College: Offices closed until10:30 a.m.; classes start at 11:15 a.m.

Pine Tree ISD: Closed

Region 7 ESC: Closed

Sabine ISD: Closed

St. Mary's Catholic School: Closed

Spring Hill ISD: Closed

Texas State Technical College in Marshall: Closed

Trinity School of Texas: Closed

Union Grove ISD: Closed

White Oak ISD: Closed

Municipal closings/delays

City of Henderson: Offices closed until noon

City of Longview: Longview Transit is delayed until 10 a.m. 

Business closings/delays

Wellness Pointe: Longview, Gilmer, Kilgore offices closed

Zeid Women’s Health Center: will be closed

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Courtney Stern is a public safety reporter covering a wide range of topics. She grew up in Baltimore and later earned a journalism degree from the University of Miami. Stern moved to East Texas from Iowa with her husband and two dogs, Pebbles and Bam Bam.