LA CROSSE, Wis. -

This year's spring is shaping up to be one of the coldest on record.

Normally by now, some area fields would be open for community softball and baseball games and people would be out enjoying the parks. This year, that’s not the case.

“It's unfortunate, but you can't fight Mother Nature,” said La Crosse Park and Recreation Director Steve Carylon.

Lately, it’s seems like the birds and the squirrels are the only ones getting some good use out of the city's parks and ball fields.

“It's put a damper on some of the opportunities we have this time of year,” said Carylon.

This spring's howling winds and cold temperatures are keeping the fields and the stands empty longer than usual.

“Some of the softball programs haven't kicked on or some of the soccer programs haven't kicked on or (are) delayed because we can't get onto the fields because they're wet,” said Carylon.

“It certainly hurts the outdoor recreation side of the biking and the hiking,” said Dave Clements of the La Crosse Area Visitor and Convention Bureau.

The cold weather is keeping a lot of the outdoor tourists away, but so far La Crosse has hosted more than five conventions this year and Clements said there's plenty more to come.

“Especially this time of year, things start to ramp up starting about mid-May,” said Carylon. “All I know is with all the meetings and conventions, we've been really busy in the hotel business and convention service that we provide.”

So for now the parks and the benches may stay empty, but Carylon said maybe this just means we'll have longer summer weather to enjoy.

“I think it's just what it is and we learn to adapt to it,” said Carylon. “Now maybe we'll have 80 degree weather in October this year, so we'll keep a positive outlook for it.”

For the most updated information on park conditions and program cancellations head to the city’s website.