Weather Extremes From Past Memorial Days

May 26, 2022
Extreme weather from past Memorial Days
Published: May. 26, 2022 at 6:01 PM CDT
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HASTINGS, Neb. (KSNB) - Memorial Day, once known as Decoration Day, has been observed on the last Monday of May since 1971, allowing for a range of dates between May 25 and May 31. Prior to 1971, Memorial Day was always observed may 30th. Late-May weather conditions in south central Nebraska can vary from spring-to-summer-like, and thunderstorms, sometimes severe, pay a semi-regular visit. Let’s take a quick look at some of the extreme weather Grand Island has seen in the past 126 Memorial Days.

Starting with extreme temperatures that occurred on Memorial Day, for you jalapeno lovers, the hottest Memorial Day on record was in 1934 where the thermometer shot to a scorching 103 degrees. On the flip side, for the winter weather enthusiasts, the coldest occurred in 1947 with a morning low of 36 degrees. And if you are a fan of the 90s, you might be surprised to know that only 11 of the past 126 memorial days featured 90 degrees or warmer. The most recent being in the year 2000. Hmm...I have personally always been a fan of the 80s. Moving on to wetter things...the wettest Memorial Day on record goes to the year 1935 with 2.97″ of rain. It seems that a lot of Memorial Days have seen rain as 51 of the past 126, or 40%, have had measurable rain fall at some point during the day. The past 10 years have been quite wet with 7 of the past 10 seeing rain. And we can’t forget about severe weather. After all, everyone in Nebraska knows what happens in the plains in May. Believe it or not, the last time severe weather affected Grand Island on Memorial Day was 11 years ago on may 30, 2011. A vicious squall line moved through whipping up wind gusts to 74 mph causing tree and structure damage around the town. Three years ago, Grand Island dodged a severe storm that hit Kearney with ping pong ball size hail. The storm moved north and stayed west of GI that day allowing for the memorial day gatherings to continue without a hitch. As far as this Memorial Day goes, it looks like it will be a winner with 90s for highs under sunny skies.

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