December 3, 2011
We are now into December and still no snow. My kids are worried about Santa and a white Christmas. Has it ever not snowed before Christmas in the Chicago area?
—Nicole Lindsey, Arlington Heights
Chicago is waiting for its first measurable snowfall, of the season, which usually occurs around Nov. 16, but the area has always recorded measurable snowfall before Christmas. Checking records that back to 1884, the city's latest arrival of the season's first measurable snow was Dec.16, 1965. However, Chicago only experiences a white Christmas (at least 1 inch of snow on the ground) a little more than 40 percent of the time, so early season snowfall certainly does not guarantee a white Christmas. In 2004, a Thanksgiving Eve snowstorm put more than 4 inches of on the ground, giving the city one of just 11 white Thanksgivings, but that snow soon melted and the ground was bare on Christmas Day.
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