Winter events like this come along every 10 or 20 years in the Garden State.

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According to Dr. David Robinson, the state climatologist at Rutgers University, New Jersey would have to reach back as far as 1996 for the last snow mess that truly crippled the state. Some locations were pounded with more than two feet of snow.

"It's not unprecedented. However, it's not something that comes along every year," Robinson said, noting 10-inch events are a rarity in most parts of New Jersey.

The Monday-Tuesday forecast called for at least six inches of snow in the southwestern portion of the state, but more than two feet is possible when all is said and done from the eastern half of Ocean County on north.

Robinson said New Jersey has been the victim of several massive winter storms this century, such as the post-Christmas mess of 2010, but nothing compares to the blizzard of '96.

"You're talking a decade here or a decade there in between these types of storms," he said.

Prior to this snow event, winter had been quite calm in New Jersey. Robinson said statewide snowfall amounts were running a bit below average for the season.

For some people, the worst news isn't the snow itself, but what's to follow. According to Robinson, "it's going to be cold, and it is going to remain cold for the better part of the next two weeks."

"Whatever falls is going to hang around," he said. "We're in the throes of the core of winter right now, and it's not going to loosen its grip for the next couple weeks.