Friday, October 24, 2008
Storm Stefanie Takes Aim on Lafayette Along with Snow Flurries!
My name is Barb Meihls. I took this photo in our back yard when our grandkids came over to play in the leaves that Grandpa piled up for them. This was taken October 18th.
In the leaves all you can see are the faces of Hunter, Jonathan, Hayvn, and Madison.
Thanks Barb! Happy Fall Break to all the kids, grandparents, and parents. I do know that many folks that go on trips this time of year are staying closer to home or having a staycation. This means the weather forecast is more important than ever. If your kids or grandkids are anything like mine they absolutely need to get outside and burn off some energy or else it can get ugly in a hurry. I am already in the dog house with my wife over this talk of snow and she will love that rain is in the forecast for the kid's first day of fall break. But I have some good news. I still think the kids can get outside for most of their fall break. Just make sure they are bundled up on Monday. Today though does look more like a bowling day. You can see why below. We have storm Stefanie spinning our way. Yes, we named our third big storm Stefanie. Yes, Justin's names were very creative but Stefanie got the most votes and it is in honor of our new morning meteorologist Stefanie Davis who is doing a great job! This was Teri's idea and a great one I might add. We do need to start naming storms after some of our bloggers as Brow suggested. If we are naming a storm after one of our weather team's members it better be impressive and the good news is that it is! Wow the picture below looks like an inland hurricane!
As impressive as this is Stefanie is actually weakening as it moves into Indiana and as it moves east it will wrap plenty of dry air up into our neck of the woods. So today even though we may start with some steady rain on our Friday I do see a break in the rain by late today and this evening with only an isolated shower possible as a dry slot works in. This means there will only be one or two blips of green on Live Doppler 18. You could even take the kids to the Boo at the Zoo that so far has rave reviews. We have had great luck on Fridays for the past 10 weeks for high school football and tonight is no exception. The graph above does show one more round of rain by late tonight and first thing Saturday before we dry out for rest of our weekend. So all in all Stefanie will go down as a dynamic and friendly fall storm. I wanted to give a special shout out to my youngest daughter Lauren who prepared for Stefanie's arrival by sweeping out the Prangley garage.
She did this all on her own. I was in shock when I asked her what she was doing with a broom twice her size. She said she wanted to clean the garage for me and my 4 year old did this for about 30 minutes. This is in stark contrast to her other two sisters. I better not go there, but I love them just as much! Lauren was very excited when I told her about some snow on the way for Sunday night. She screamed with joy when I told her about frost last week but in my book this tops that by a mile and it is another good example of how my 3 girls are always keeping me on my toes and the good news is that sometimes even means some very pleasant surprises!
Speaking of surprises.....the talk of the town was not just the lower gas prices but the snow your local weather team has been talking about. If you are a regular blog reader the snow in the forecast should come as no surprise. We have been talking about possible snow during the last week of October for at least the last couple of weeks. So if this does happen you better believe I will be very proud of this. Being a meteorologist in the Midwest is always humbling and it is just nice to see things work out as planned. Nothing is ever taken for granted that is for sure. I will be up all night until I see that first flake of snow fall on Sunday night and early Monday. I will not need coffee that is for sure. I am not the only one excited. Stefanie came into work with me yesterday afternoon despite being up since 2 a.m. She has to get up that early to prepare for our morning show that begins at 5 a.m. She certainly did not look tired when she came in yesterday as you see below. She could not believe I wanted to take her picture for the blog, but I explained how important this is to you and what our bloggers mean to us! Thanks Stef!
There is our newly designed weather set and that is not the only reason Stefanie is smiling. She brought in her lap top computer and we both went over BUFIT data in detail. BUFKIT is a forecast profile visualization and analysis tool kit developed by the staff at the National Weather Service (NWS) office in Buffalo and the Warning Decision Training Branch (WDTB) in Norman, OK. As of January 2001 it is in use in over 75 NWS, Department of Defense, University, and Environment Canada locations. Basically BUFKIT helps you fine-tune details of a forecast and it is a great guide for snow forecasting. Well, let's see what we found!
Yes!! This is when I did a lap around the studio yesterday! Our weather team found a blue bar which indicates snow flurries. You see it pops up just before 12 zulu on Monday morning which is actually Greenwhich Mean Time. So if we get the snow it would likely be very late Sunday night and early Monday morning. I still would not rule out a few lake-effect snow showers around the area during the day Monday. We would also have another chance early Tuesday with BUFKIT showing some deeper moisture in place to go along with our first arctic air mass of the season.
Excitement is in the air and fall break may feel like winter break for many kids by Monday but that is what Indiana is all about and why I love living here. We will keep you updated and I really mean that. Prime example number one...I am not even close to tired and here it is at 1:22 a.m. and in strolls our weekend forecaster Brian Wolfe all fired up about the weekend and winter forecast. We just went over some Skew T's which are also known as a meteorologist's weather bible. We will have quite an impressive northwest wind on Monday morning and they are showing enough moisture in place to squeeze out some flurries. Yes! Not to boast or sound like a promotion but I do not think any other weather staff compares to the one we have at WLFI when it comes to sheer or should I say "scherer" enthusiasm and work ethic. Of course we are also very grateful to have Steve Scherer on our staff and when there is anything big coming you better believe he will be here. I am surprised I have not seen Steve yet!
Your winter outlook is being put on hold due to new developments and due to storm Stefanie and the impending flurries. Think of it as a snow delay. I can tell you I still see plenty of cold weather here to stay by Thanksgiving and continuing through the holidays with plenty of snow. The New Year may bring a new warmer pattern but this may be less fact than fiction based on some new long-range indicators. More on this here on the blog next week. I will most likely check in with you this weekend with a snow update. Who else would I chat with all night when snow is in the forecast? I HAVE BEEN WAITING ALL SPRING, SUMMER, AND FALL FOR THIS....okay I need to pace myself. HAVE A GREAT DAY AND LET IT SNOW!!