"Take your time because this kind of snow they call heart-attack makers," he told CNN affiliate WLS-TV. "I mean, it will kill you."
Others left the shoveling for later, opting instead to break out the sleds.
"I love it," said John Harris, grinning from ear to ear in his Notre Dame stocking cap. "This is Chicago. This is what it should be like."
In Texas, some people had to resort to unconventional tools to get the job done. CNN iReporter Julie Swift of Plainview, Texas -- where 2 or 3 inches fell -- said she used a plastic school chair.
"The guy was shoveling next door for an older lady. I thought he had a real shovel," she said. "But he had a lid to a big plastic tub. That was funny."
Two weeks, two storms
The storm brought up to a foot of snow to parts of eastern Kansas, Missouri and Illinois a day after plastering southern Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas. It was the second major system to hit the area in two weeks.
In Shawnee, Kansas, the roof of a horse arena collapsed under the weight of snow Tuesday morning, CNN affiliate KSHB reported. It was one of several collapses in the region caused by snow, the station said.
No injuries were reported in those collapses, but a person died Monday in a roof collapse in hard-hit Woodward, Oklahoma, said Mayor Roscoe Hill.
Two other deaths came in Kansas on Monday in separate weather-related accidents on Interstate 70. One accident happened in Sherman County and the other in Ellis County, the Kansas National Guard said.
About 106,000 Kansas City Power and Light customers lost power at some point during the storm, the company said Wednesday. About 10,000 remained without power Wednesday morning, the company said.