Summer Solstice: June 21

June 20, 2015: The astronomical or “official” start of summer is here tomorrow! The summer season begins at 11:38 a.m., and is the longest day of the year.

SUMMER SOLSTICE

Click on image to enlarge

The Earth is tilted the most toward the sun in the Northern Hemisphere, giving us the most amount of daylight. In fact, the day is a whopping 6 hours longer than the Winter Solstice, or the shortest day of the year! The sun’s rays are also nearly 5 times stronger during this part of the summer, allowing us to heat up quickly during the day.  As we tilt away from the sun in the coming months, the sun’s rays get weaker as they have to travel a little farther through space to reach us.

Enjoy the extra rays, and here’s to summer!

-Alex

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Posted under science, statistics, sunlight, warm up, weather

This post was written by Alex Kirchner on June 19, 2015

Going For Two

What a week we’ve had!  Sunshine and warmth every day, which each day a little warmer than the last.

Highs slowly climbed into the lower 80's this week thanks to sunny, quiet weather

Highs slowly climbed into the lower 80’s this week thanks to sunny, quiet weather

What made this Friday in particular so nice, was that the weather didn’t take a turn for the worst, like we’ve had lately.  Counting today, 3 out of the last 5 Fridays have had horrible weather for outdoor events: thunderstorms, lightning, wind, and bone-chilling dampness and cold.

Stormy and sometimes cold weather impacted high school football games 3 weeks in a row, in addition to impacting other outdoor events

Stormy and sometimes cold weather impacted high school football games 3 weeks in a row, in addition to impacting other outdoor events

There were unfortunate impacts on our typical Friday night events, with lightning and rain delays and cancellations for Friday night high school football, and the Rockford City Market was cancelled two weeks in a row because of thunderstorms and unpleasant cold and damp weather.  These, of course, are wise decisions to keep everyone safe, but they do put a damper on the last few nice Fridays before winter sets in. I think that’s why today’s “2-point conversion” (or 2-Friday conversion) felt a little extra nice- we had splendid weather for Friday night under the lights in a row.

Valid Saturday, Sep. 27 to Sunday, Sep. 28

Valid Saturday, Sep. 27 to Sunday, Sep. 28

Looking ahead, make sure you get outdoors and enjoy the gorgeous weather this weekend!  80’s, sunshine, and low humidity should add up for a beautiful weekend.  Enjoy!

-Alex Kirchner

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Posted under event, warm up, weather

This post was written by Alex Kirchner on September 26, 2014

Wash, Rinse, Repeat

Now that we’ve officially entered the first week of Fall, we’ve all got sweaters, boots, apple cider donuts and football on our minds, right?

Wrong.

You may want to replace those boots with sandals and the apple cider with  lemonade. Feel free to keep the football thoughts though 😉 Our first week of fall is actually taking steps toward more summer-like weather. Did you enjoy the weather yesterday? Plenty of sunshine, calm winds, upper 60’s. Get used to it!
9-23 blog1

Wash, Rinse, Repeat. That’s the forecast through the rest of the week. BUT before you throw in the soap….
9-23 blog 2

 

Turn up the heat.

We’ll see high pressure continue to bring us sunshine this week, as well as calm winds. We could pick up a few clouds toward the end of the week due to a disturbance to our west, however high pressure helps to keep rain chances away. In addition to the sunny sky and light wind, we’ll see temperatures climb.
Today, temperatures top out in the low 70’s. By the end of the week, we’ll be looking at temperatures in the mid to upper 70’s.

Happy Fall, all!

-Morgan Kolkmeyer

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Posted under science, sunlight, warm up, weather

This post was written by Morgan Kolkmeyer on September 23, 2014

Brief Taste of Heat & Humidity

The hottest day of the month—and potentially the hottest day of the summer so far—lies ahead of us on Tuesday. High temperatures will rise into the upper 80s and flirt with 90 degrees by the afternoon. It’s going to be hazy, hot and humid. Dew point values will rise into the 70s giving the air a tropical-feel.

Flirting with 90° Tuesday

Flirting with 90° Tuesday

Combining our air temperature and relative humidity gives us the heat index. The heat index is more or less a “real-feel” index when outside in a hot and humid airmass. The index Tuesday afternoon will reach the middle and upper 90s across northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin. If you’re going to be outside during the heat of the day, make sure to drink plenty of water and dress appropriately.

Feeling Pretty Hot

Feeling Pretty Hot

By Tuesday evening and night, a cold front will slide through the area. This will bring some scattered showers and thunderstorms.

There is a chance for an isolated stronger thunderstorm or two. Heavy rain and gusty wind are the main concerns. There is a small window for thunderstorm development before the front passes through and our airmass changes again. Cooler, less humid air is on tap for Wednesday through Friday with highs in the upper 70s.

-Joe

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Posted under severe weather, warm up

This post was written by qni_it on July 21, 2014

Oppressive Heat Absent

For those of you waiting for a good old-fashioned summer heat wave, you’ll have to keep on waiting! It is true, however, that we will see a warm-up through the weekend and into early next week. Highs will rise into the low 80s for Saturday and Sunday. Middle and upper 80s are on tap for the first few days of the new work week. There is a good chance that Tuesday will be the warmest day of July so far! In fact, Tuesday may tie for one of the warmest days of the year!

noheatyet

The warmest temperature of meteorological summer was 89 degrees, which occurred on June 1st and June 17th. We haven’t even reached 90 degrees yet this summer! We did reach 91 on May 31st, which is technically still in meteorological spring. Compare this year’s one 90-degree day with last year and the year before. In 2013, we already had five 90-degree days by the middle of July. In 2012, we checked in with an incredible 31 90-degree days, including six days sizzling in 100-degree heat!

Even though we have yet to have a heat wave this summer, it hasn’t been a terribly cool season. The month of June had 23 days with highs in the 80s, four days with highs in the 70s, and two days with highs in the 60s. July, however, has had seven days with highs in the 80s, seven with highs in the 70s, and two with highs in the 60s. The way things are shaping up, the month of July is on track to finish cooler than the month of June! What can we expect in August? Overall, models continue to hint at a slightly cooler than average month!

-Joe

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Posted under 13 Climate Authority, statistics, warm up, weather

This post was written by qni_it on July 17, 2014

Warmer Days Ahead

George Jefferson might say “We’re movin’ on up.” Miley Cyrus might call it “the climb.” All pop references aside, we are talking about a decent warm up in our near future! From now through early next week, high and low temperatures will rise a couple of degrees each day.

From Below Average to Above Average

From Below Average to Above Average

Low humidity values and comfortably warm temperatures will be the name of the game through Saturday. By Sunday, highs will make a push for the middle 80s with more mugginess in the atmosphere. Upper 80s—above average for a change—will arrive by Tuesday.

Warming Up

Warming Up

We will get to enjoy plenty of sunshine throughout the next seven days as well. The next decent chance for rain will not arrive until Tuesday night and Wednesday.

-Joe

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Posted under warm up, weather

This post was written by qni_it on July 16, 2014