National White Christmas predictions, see your chances

Jessica Spaccio, a climatologist with the NOAA-funded Northeast Regional Climate Center at Cornell University, crunched numbers from the past 50 years of weather observations – from 1964 through 2013 – to calculate the best places for snow on the ground come Christmas and a dry drive to those New Year’s Eve parties. From Alaska to Wyoming, here’s how she sees it.

Spaccio says: 

“It’s that time of year again.  The days are short but lit by twinkle lights and the weather has turned cold, giving hope of a white Christmas.  A coastal storm dropped several inches in parts of the Northeast last week Dec. 8, but will it stick for Jolly Old Saint Nick?

“Fairbanks, Alaska, Duluth, Minn., and Pinkham Notch, N.H., have more than a 90 percent probability of an inch or more on the ground on Dec. 25, are your best chances for a white holiday.

“Have you made plans for New Year’s Eve?  If you’ll be out on the town in Cleveland, Ohio; Eugene, Ore.; or Seattle, Wash. pack an umbrella!  Based on 1964 to 2013 they have more than a 50 percent probability of having a wet New Year’s Eve.  If you don’t want to worry about rain or snow, Las Vegas only has a 2 percent probability of precipitation.”

Media Note: A lists of the probability of Christmas snow and New Year’s Eve precipitation for select U.S. cities are below. Additional cities, plus graphics can be downloaded from:


Probability of 1″ or more of snow on the ground December 25

Huntsville, Ala. 0  
Fairbanks, Ala. 100  
Flagstaff, Ariz. 63  
Little Rock, Ariz. 2  
Boulder, Colo. 44  
Bridgeport, Conn. 22  
Hartford, Conn. 44  
Wilmington, Del. 7  
Washington, D.C. 6  
Augusta, Ga. 0  
Boise, Idaho 26  
Chicago, Ill. 40  
Indianapolis, Ind. 26  
Des Moines, Iowa 44  
Topeka, Kan. 20  
Louisville, Ky. 12  
Caribou, Maine 90
Portland, Maine 62
Baltimore, Md. 8  
Boston, Mass. 17  
Worcester, Mass. 51
Detroit, Mich. 42  
Duluth, Minn. 96  
St. Louis, Mo. 24  
Helena, Mont. 59  
Omaha, Neb. 32  
Las Vegas, Nev. 0  
Concord, N.H. 69
Pinkham Notch, N.H. 93  
Atlantic City, N.J. 7  
Newark, N.J. 14  
Albuquerque, N.M. 2  
Albany, N.Y. 44
Binghamton, N.Y. 62
Buffalo, N.Y. 62
Central Park, N.Y. 7
Islip, N.Y. 16
Ithaca, N.Y. 59
Kennedy Airport, N.Y. 10
LaGuardia Airport, N.Y. 8
Rochester, N.Y. 56
Syracuse, N.Y. 66
Watertown, N.Y. 78
Raleigh, N.C. 2  
Grand Forks, N.D. 85  
Cleveland, Ohio 46  
Oklahoma City, Okla. 6  
Eugene, Ore. 5  
Allentown, Pa. 25
Erie, Pa. 56
Harrisburg, Pa. 22
Philadelphia, Pa. 6
Pittsburgh, Pa. 28
Scranton, Pa. 38
Williamsport, Pa. 31
Providence, R.I. 22  
Columbia, S.C. 0  
Sioux Falls, S.D. 60  
Memphis, Tenn. 4  
Amarillo, Texas 12  
Salt Lake City, Utah 58  
Burlington, Vt. 68  
Dulles Ap, Va. 10
Richmond, Va. 5  
Seattle, Wash. 8  
Beckley, W.Va. 33  
Charleston, W.Va. 21  
Elkins, W.Va. 31  
Huntington, W.Va. 14  
Madison, Wis. 70  
Casper, Wyo. 49  
For interviews contact:
Melissa Osgood
office: 607-255-2059
cell: 716-860-0587

Cornell University has television, ISDN and dedicated Skype/Google+ Hangout studios available for media interviews. 

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