Weather or Not: Last month of summer

WCCO Chief Meteorologist Chris Shaffer


My mother always tells me that the first words out of my mouth when I was a baby were, “new bridge.”

OK … I’m kidding around, but those words seem to be the most popular ones these days in the St. Croix Valley. Residents have been talking about the possibility since I moved here in the 70s. And the new bridge is finally finished! Did you get across the lift bridge one last time? After 86 years of service the old bridge will take a break until June of 2019 when it reopens to our feet and bike tires.

And I hear talk that it will be green in color. Apparently that was its original color. Perhaps I will run into you at the big bridge-closing polka party next Saturday night. Both the old and new structures are truly something to celebrate.

Perhaps you are heading to the Washington County Fair tonight, tomorrow or Sunday. At least we got rid of the humidity. But don’t expect a big warm-up anytime soon. In fact our temps could hang below average for the next several days. I will still order a milkshake, and my kids will pet every animal in sight. It sure is fun to run into old classmates and see their growing children. It seems like just yesterday we were the little ones.

I don’t think this month will be as wet as last August when we sloshed through 7.82 inches of rain. It was our sixth-wettest August on record, and five of the days we had more than an inch of rain. I love a green lawn, but I don’t want a submerged one again.

Hopefully the rain holds off next weekend for Lake Elmo’s Huff n’ Puff days the 10th through the 13th. Ninety-six teams will be swinging for the fences at the big softball tournament. And many of those teams will fuel up at the pancake breakfast Saturday and Sunday from 8 .m. to noon.

And I know many of you have a yearly tradition of heading to the Minnesota State Fair, which runs Aug. 24 through Labor Day. I sure hope you swing by and say “hello” if you are out there. I’m not too hard to find at the WCCO booth. I’ll try not to chat with food in my mouth. But you know how hard that is at the fair.

By month’s end the average high will be 78, the sun will set before 8 p.m., and your kids will be back in school. Adults cheer … kids jeer! Enjoy the last big month of summer and make some wonderful memories.

Chris Shaffer is WCCO’s chief meteorologist.