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Weather Talk: Don't give up on summer quite yet

Is summer dead? Well, it certainly seems to have peaked. The consistently cooler than average temperatures this August have certainly taken the edge off of what had been a nominally warm summer season.

Don't be surprised, though, if a few more hot afternoons and a few more muggy nights return before the month is over. It was back in August of 2003 when, following a relatively mild first half of August, a long stretch of hot and humid weather built into the northern Plains. For nine out of 12 days, temperatures were in the 90s, many in the middle and upper 90s, complete with high humidity. Many of the nights did not cool below 70 degrees.

This heat wave happened just as North Dakota schools were getting underway, causing the cancellation of classes in many districts. The Fargo School District was obliged to begin a program of installing air conditioners in older school buildings without air conditioning, as well as delaying the start date in future years.

John Wheeler

John was born in Baton Rouge, LA, and grew up near Birmingham, Alabama. As a teenager, his family moved to Madison, Wisconsin, and later to a small town in northeast Iowa. John traces his early interest in weather to the difference in climate between Alabama and Wisconsin. He is a graduate of Iowa State University with a degree in meteorology. Like any meteorologist, John is intrigued by extremes of weather, especially arctic air outbreaks and winter storms.  John has been known to say he prefers his summers to be hot but in winter, he prefers the cold.  When away from work, John enjoys long-distance running and reading.  John has been a meteorologist at WDAY since May of 1985.

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