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      Downright Cold!: May 22, 1967

      This was the 5000 foot temperatures on the morning of July 4, 1967. There was a pocket of 273 Kelvin (32 degrees Farenheit) air just northeast of Upper Michigan. In the colder time of the year, that air mass would support snow.

      It will be chilly over much of Upper Michigan the next couple of nights as cool high pressure builds in. However, 47 years ago, it was cold. On May 22, 1967, the temperature at the National Weather Service (NWS) dipped to a low of 21 degrees. In over 50 years of records-keeping, it has never been as cold so late in the season at the NWS location. This low temperature took place during a cool time. Many record-low temperatures during the summer occurred during this decade.

      In 1967, June ended just about average. However, both July and August were over 2 degrees below normal and included some record summer cold. The all-time record low for July of 34 was tied on July 5, 1967. This was one of the Fourths that long-time U.P. residents say they saw snowflakes during Fourth of July parades. The air aloft was almost cold enough (Image above). However, the U.S. Weather Bureau high in Marquette that day was 56 and the low was 45. It would never snow in January with an air mass that warm, so I am skeptical that it snowed on July 4. Nonetheless, it was a miserably cool summer holiday.

      This first summer holiday of 2014 looks warm and pleasant. High pressure will build in on Friday and linger through a good share of the weekend. With late May sun working on the air mass, temperatures should shoot up quickly on Friday after a chilly start. It will likely get pretty chilly again Friday night, especially over central and eastern interior locations as high pressure only slowly drifts to our east. Sunday will warm even further as southerly winds begin to pick up.