1. Updated — 9:11 a.m., ET Jan. 3:
2. The season’s first big winter storm began hitting parts of the Midwest and East Coast on Thursday and continued into Friday morning.
A tattered flag flies by a flooded yard along the shore in Scituate, Mass.
3. The heaviest snow was reported in New England.
4. The Weather Channel decided to name this storm “Hercules.” We don’t really know why.
The company also named last year’s Nemo.
5. U.S. airlines were forced to cancel thousands of flights nationwide.
Per @flightaware’s misery map, >50% of flights in CHI, NYC, & BOS now delayed or cancelled. http://t.co/2lo21iOvL5
6. New York City’s Mayor DeBlasio was out Friday morning demonstrating his shoveling technique.
7. Hours before the snow began in New York City, some Midwesterners were already buried well under it. Chicago has seen at least 9.2 inches so far.
8. Areas north of Chicago have seen more than 15 inches.
9. Wisconsin’s cold weather is expected to break records, which is bad news for Packers fans.
USA TODAY Weather
Forecast gametime temperatures in Green Bay on Sunday: -7 to -10 degrees. Not too far from famed Ice Bowl temps in 1967 of -15.
MBTA Transit Police
Photo not #MBTA related but we just had to share. Man in #Cambridge shoveling. Really ??? Wow
13. State employees in Massachusetts were sent home at 3 p.m., and several schools have been closed through Friday, including all public schools in Boston, Somerville, Cambridge, Newton, Waltham, and more.
Stay home if you can. The roads are wicked slippery. #MAsnow #MassDialect #NotActualMessageBoard
Amtrak’s Acela Express and Northeast Regional service passengers should expect reduced frequencies.
16. More than 2,000 crews are reportedly working to clear the roads in Boston.
18. It was announced Thursday evening all School District of Philadelphia schools would be closed on Friday, Jan. 3 due to the weather.
@BuzzFeedNews @BuzzFeed Snowy Rittenhouse: Philadelphia
19. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie declared states of emergency ahead of the storm.
The Long Island Expressway and Interstate 84 were shut down at midnight, and express subway service stopped at 5:45 p.m. Thursday, officials said.
23. The National Weather Service said parts of upstate New York have already seen 18 inches of snow.
24. New York City public schools are closed. On Thursday, friends of Dante De Blasio took to social media to ask him to convince his father to close schools because of the snow.
25. Prioritize, New Yorkers.
I guess there is a #noreaster coming. There’s a line outside Trader Joe’s in Brooklyn.
Check back and follow @BuzzFeedNews for updates.