National Weather Observers Day – May 4, 2023

National Weather Observers Day is on May 4. With their observations and weather reports, many people assist the National Weather Service to achieve its purpose of preserving life and property. SKYWARN, Cooperative (Co-Op) Observers, CoCoRaHS (Community Collaborative Rain, Hail, and Snow Network), and the general public are all part of this network. 

History of National Weather Observers Day

Alan Brue, who studied psychology at the State University of New York, invented the day on May 4, 1989. This day was developed for weather amateurs and professionals to honor their passion for the weather. Every year on May 4, this day is commemorated for those who enjoy viewing different weather phenomena.

With their sightings and weather reports, many individuals and groups assist the National Weather Service in fulfilling its objective of protecting people and property. 

As a volunteer, you can be a part of the CoCoRaHS Observers Team, which is available to anyone ready to work on measuring and mapping precipitation. In this program, you will receive all of the necessary equipment and training on how to measure and map precipitation and how to prepare reports.

It’s simple to set up; get a rain gauge, hang it outside during the rainy season, check the rain in the gauge, and report your findings on the National Weather Service’s website.

The major goal of this day is to emphasize the importance of professionals who work in weather services 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to warn people about approaching storms and other weather changes. A thousand weather observations are made every day by weather spotters and weather stations all around the world.

These observations give crucial information that warns the public about impending storms from all three locations; land, sea, and air. They also aid in a better understanding of weather events and the analysis of historical data.

 

National Weather Observers Day timeline

650 B.C.
Weather Prediction Using Cloud Patterns

The Babylonians use astrology and cloud patterns for weather prediction.

1835
Modern Era of Weather Forecasting

The invention of the telegraph ushers in modern-day weather forecasting.

1859
Weather Forecasting is Introduced

FitzRoy develops charts to report weather phenomena he describes as “forecasting weather,” thereby inventing the term ‘weather forecast.’

1989
National Weather Observers Day is Created

Alan Brue creates National Weather Observers Day on May 4.

National Weather Observers Day FAQs

What do weather observers do?

A weather observer collects, records, and maps weather conditions, both good and bad. Observers need to be willing to gather weather information in the rain, blinding heat, and other extreme conditions.

What equipment do weather observers use?

Observational data is collected using buoys, radiosondes, doppler radar, and weather satellites, among others. The data is fed into the N.W.S. forecast models that use present and past weather information to develop forecast guidance for meteorologists.

How is weather data used?

Climate and weather data are utilized in different ways. Decision-makers in towns and cities use this information to plan for extreme weather conditions, water management, and even energy needs.

National Weather Observers Day Activities

  1. Sign up for a weather spotter’s course

    If you have a passion for observing weather phenomena, you should take a course for Weather Spotters. These courses teach everything from identifying clouds to tracking shifting weather and so on.

  2. Play a prediction game

    Play a prediction game with friends and family where you all try to predict the weather for the next week and see who is right. The winner can get a gift, and everyone gets to sharpen their weather-watching skills.

  3. Make your very own barometer

    Making a barometer is an excellent way to spend Weather Observers Day. It can be put together quite easily using a few materials around the home. Look up tutorial videos and get to work!

5 Important Facts About The Weather

  1. Amateur league

    There is a group for amateur weather enthusiasts called the Association of American Weather Observers.

  2. Incoming

    Storm spotters came to the fore during WWII, alerting fighting forces of incoming lightning.

  3. Judge of the skies

    Honorable William Rehnquist, the U.S. Supreme Court’s former Chief Justice, was a weatherman.

  4. Blinding speed

    Raindrops can reach a maximum speed of 18-mph.

  5. Doing the numbers

    The first-ever mathematical weather forecast lasted six hours and took about six weeks to calculate.

Why We Love National Weather Observers Day

  1. Weather predictions save lives and property

    The National Weather Service’s vision is to use the weather observations and reports to protect life and property. Without these timely bits of information, storms and other weather phenomena would wreak even more havoc.

  2. We get to learn a lot

    Weather observation gives us valuable insight into the peculiarities of different weather phenomena. We get to explore and gain more understanding, enjoying nature in all its magnificence.

  3. Appreciation for weather people

    National Weather Observers Day is dedicated to all the players that contribute to the amazing work done by the National Weather Service. On this day, we get to show our appreciation for their work that often goes unnoticed.

National Weather Observers Day dates

YearDateDay
2022May 4Wednesday
2023May 4Thursday
2024May 4Saturday
2025May 4Sunday
2026May 4Monday

Holidays Straight to Your Inbox

Every day is a holiday!
Receive fresh holidays directly to your inbox.