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I'm an Emmy Award Winning meteorologist at Fox 61 in Hartford. For the latest forecast updates (and fun stuff too, like food and family pics), please follow me on Facebook, twitter and instagram. I look forward to interacting with you there!

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Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Sunflowers For Wishes

WARNING: THESE PICTURES CANNOT CAPTURE HOW GORGEOUS THIS EVENT IS IN PERSON

Buttonwood Farms in Griswold has hosted this yearly event beginning in 2003. They plant 10 acres of sunflowers and offer $5 hayrides through the towering yellow flowers. All the money goes to the Make A Wish Foundation. It's a beautiful idea and a beautiful sight. Here are some pics from the farm. Some are with my best friend Kim and the others are with my sister Jade. And no...I didn't do an outfit change between shots. (I'm not that much of a diva!) I actually drove all the way to Griswold TWICE to see the flowers.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Walton Pond Relocation Project

I got to hold baby turtles! That's all I have to say about that.
The kids were so enthusiastic it blew me away. They will remember helping these animals for the rest of their lives.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Storm Damage

Storm Damage

The link above is to an article written by our weather staff in conjunction with the Hartford Courant. It has some good details and pics!

National Weather Service Confirms Tornado in Bristol

The National Weather Service determined ONE TORNADO touched down FOUR TIMES: Litchfield (3:35 PM), Thomaston (3:50 PM), Terryville (4:05 PM) and Bristol (4:15 PM). They released this statement:

LOCATION...BRISTOL IN HARTFORD COUNTY CT
DATE...JULY 21 2010
  • Estimated time: 4:15 PM
  • Max EF Scale Rating: EF1
  • Estimated Max Wind Speed: 90 mph
  • Maximum Path Width: 25 yards
  • Path Length: 1.5 miles
  • Beginning LAT/LON:41.68 / 72.94W
  • Ending LAT/LON: 41.68 / 72.94W
  • Fatalities: 0
  • Injuries: 0
* THE INFORMATION IN THIS STATEMENT IS PRELIMINARY AND SUBJECT TO CHANGE PENDING FINAL REVIEW OF THE EVENT(S) AND PUBLICATION IN NWS STORM DATA.

...SUMMARY...
THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN TAUNTON MA HAS CONFIRMED A TORNADO IN BRISTOL IN HARTFORD COUNTY CT ON JULY 21 2010.

A BRIEF TORNADO TOUCHDOWN OCCURRED NEAR BLAKESLEE AND HIGH STREETS WHERE TREE TOPS WERE TWISTED OFF. DAMAGE FROM STRAIGHT LINE WINDS WAS ALSO EVIDENT IN THIS AREA. SEVERAL TREES WERE UPROOTED.

THE DAMAGE PATH WAS 1.5 MILES LONG AND 25 YARDS WIDE. DAMAGE WAS CONSISTENT WITH WIND GUSTS OF AROUND 90 MPH WHICH IS CLASSIFIED AS EF-1 ON THE ENHANCED FUJITA SCALE.

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE WOULD LIKE TO THANK THE CONNECTICUT DEPARTMENT OF EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AND HOMELAND SECURITY FOR THEIR ASSISTANCE WITH THIS STORM SURVEY.

NWS Still Investigating Possible Tornado in Hartford Co.

PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE TAUNTON MA
350 PM EDT THU JUL 22 2010

...THERE HAS BEEN NO CONFIRMATION THAT A TORNADO OCCURRED IN HARTFORD COUNTY YESTERDAY...

AS OF 350 PM...THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE SURVEY TEAM IS STILL CONDUCTING ITS INVESTIGATION AS TO WHETHER OR NOT A TORNADO TOUCHED DOWN IN SOUTHWEST HARTFORD COUNTY YESTERDAY.

THE INVESTIGATION IS EXPECTED TO BE CONCLUDED LATE THIS AFTERNOON. THIS STATEMENT WILL BE UPDATED WITH THE TEAM/S FINDINGS AT THAT TIME.

Storm Damage in Westport Caused By Straight Line Winds

The National Weather Service issued this statement today concluding that the damage in Westport was caused by straight-line winds and NOT a tornado. BUT a different NWS team is investigating the severe weather near Litchfield and Bristol.
140 PM EDT THU JUL 22 2010

...STRAIGHT LINE WIND DAMAGE OCCURRED ACROSS SOUTHEAST CONNECTICUT AND EASTERN LONG ISLAND ON WEDNESDAY EVENING...

AFTER RADAR INVESTIGATION AND COORDINATION WITH LOCAL OFFICIALS IN WESTPORT CONNECTICUT AND EASTERN SUFFOLK COUNTY NEW YORK...IT HAS BEEN DETERMINED THAT STORM DAMAGE WAS CONSISTENT WITH STRAIGHT LINE WINDS...AND NOT A TORNADO. WIND SPEEDS ARE ESTIMATED FROM RADAR TO HAVE BEEN 65 TO 70 MPH.

IN WESTPORT...THE MOST SIGNIFICANT DAMAGE OCCURRED NORTH OF EAST POST RD.

THESE STORMS MOVED ACROSS LONG ISLAND SOUND AND OVER THE TWIN FORKS OF LONG ISLAND. A POSSIBLE SIGHTING OF A WATERSPOUT WAS REPORTED NEAR NEW SUFFOLK...BUT IT DISSIPATED BEFORE REACHING LAND.

STRAIGHT LINE WIND DAMAGE OCCURRED IN THE SPRINGS...WHICH IS IN THE
TOWN OF EASTHAMPTON.

ALSO...THE TORNADO WARNING ISSUED FOR NORTHERN NEW HAVEN COUNTY WAS IN ASSOCIATION WITH A SEVERE THUNDERSTORM NEAR LITCHFIELD AND BRISTOL CONNECTICUT. THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE FORECAST OFFICE IN ALBANY NEW YORK IS INVESTIGATING THIS STORM.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Francisco Cruz Arraigned for Waterbury Murder

Why a meteorologist is reporting on this story is beyond me. I couldn't eat my lunch after reading the affidavit. Even the prosecutor said it was one of the most chilling statements he has ever read.

 

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Heat Wave #2

Friday, July 16: 93
Saturday, July 17: 93
Sunday, July 18: 90

Heat wave number two is in the books for Hartford with three days in a row of 90 degree heat. This week doesn't have much relief from the steamy weather. In fact, Monday will turn more humid out ahead of an approaching front. Skies will be partly sunny with some scattered showers and storms, mainly in the afternoon as the front gets closer. Any storms that develop could be strong with heavy rain and damaging winds. Most of the days this week will be near 90, plus or minus a few degrees.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Polytechnic ON20 Restaurant

I'm obsessed with trying new food. Sometimes that means heading to an understated hole in the wall that only locals know about. But I have to admit, I love a snooty meal at the latest swanky restaurant where lunch costs 100 bucks (and that's without the wine pairing). ON20 is the latter. BUT it's worth every penny. I found the place while googling molecular gastronomy. I was on a quest to try a flavored foam I had seen on Bravo's Top Chef.

ON20 used to be an exclusive club. But times are tough and they opened the restaurant to the public. Very few people know about it. They are located in the Hartford Steam Boiler building with large windows overlooking the Connecticut River. The view is absolutely breathtaking, even for Hartford (no offense).

I went with my friend Nick who is a photographer. He took the photos of me. But the pics of the food are from my camera. Sorry Nick but you don't need to have a fancy camera when the food is already a work of art!

The Golden One Hour Poached Egg (left) was by far, my favorite savory dish. It looks weird topped in gold, sitting on a piece of brioche drenched in beet juice. Yes, beet juice. It sounds nasty, I know! But somehow all the flavors come together beautifully. I can't explain how. You just have to try it! My favorite desert in the planet is the passion fruit tart (below). The dish is accompanied by homemade raspberry sorbet, yuzu FOAM and it's all drizzled with olive oil. Who knew you could put olive oil on dessert?

I included a photo gallery of all the ridiculous pictures Nick Caito took of me. I got a stain on my white dress before the lunch was done. Typical. That explains the "sad face" pic. ENJOY!



Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Something Out Of A Movie

That's the best way to describe Anne & Matt's wedding in the south of France.
There are moments in life where you wish you had a remote, where you wish you could just press pause. As we pulled up to the reception, I wanted to do just that. I knew that if I blinked, it would be Sunday. And blink again, I'd be back at my desk in Connecticut, working the day away. But for now, on that carefree summer day in Provence, I was hoping the wind would let up and that for once, time would stand still.

My friend Lauren and I outside the church in Mimet. I got a hat from Target to try and fit in. But it didn't work....See Exhibit A below.
No one in France wears the standard little black dress. If someone in Connecticut wore a few of the outfits I saw, she would be stared at. But in France, it's go big or go home. Maybe that's why I'm back in Connecticut.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Popcorn Thunderstorms

Here's a secret. I eat buttered popcorn five times a week. I like it burnt and I only eat the 100 calorie bags to keep my television figure. Let's face it, a fat jolly weatherman is awesome. People liked Al Roker better when he was overweight. But how often do you see a full figured female meteorologist on air?

I digress. See what popcorn does to me? I wanted to talk about the popcorn storms across the state this afternoon and evening. You'll notice on the radar from this evening, the only thunderstorm in the state is in central Connecticut. This stationary cell brought torrential rain and some lightning over the same area for about 30 minutes, and then died out. This is a pop-up (or popcorn) thunderstorm.

These storms are very common in the summer months from the mid afternoon through early evening. Pop-up storms often are not associated with any area of low pressure or any cold fronts to help them along. They rely on daytime heating causing moisture-rich air to rise, creating clouds and eventually showers or thunderstorms. They often die out after the sun sets, due to the loss of daytime heating.

They can also present forecasting challenges. People often laugh at meteorologists for being vague when they say something like "partly cloudy, a shower or storm in spots". But now you know, it's very possible for isolated storms to drop a quick 2" or rain, while some people get nothing at all. It happened today.

In summary, and here's the best part...when you watch the storms on the radar, they look like popcorn! Hence the name.

Forecast From 7-10

 

Friday, July 9, 2010

Oil in the Gulf

PBS’s News Hour has produced a widget with a running estimate of the oil spilled in the Gulf of Mexico. Anyone else feel like vomiting??

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Record Heat Tuesday Connecticut

You don’t need a meteorologist to tell you how freaking hot it was outside. But I’m going to tell you again anyway. Here are some stats Chief Meteorologist Garett Argianas dug up by sifting through National Weather Service records.

  • The high temperature of 102 degrees at Bradley International Airport (BDL) in Windsor Locks ties the record for the warmest temperature ever recorded in the Hartford area.
  • Since 1905, we have reached the 100 degree mark 23 times in the Hartford area.
  • We have reached 100 or higher 3 times since 2000.
Here’s the list of highs for today (Tuesday):
Windsor Locks: 102 – previous record 99/1999
Hartford Brainard: 102
Meriden: 102
Groton New London: 101
New Haven: 100
Danbury: 100
Willimantic: 99
Bridgeport: 98 – ties record set in 1999
Waterbury: 97


Here’s a list of the other times BDL hit triple digits:

Max of 102 - 3 times
7/3/1966
7/6/2010
8/9/2001

Max of 101 - 7 times (reached 101 a total of 10 times)
7/1/1964
7/21/1977
7/21/1991
7/22/1926
8/2/1975
8/5/1955
9/2/1953

Max of 100 - 13 times (reached 100 a total of 23 times)
6/26/1952
6/30/1964
7/3/1911
7/10/1911
7/10/1936
7/14/1965
7/15/1995
7/19/1991
7/20/1991
8/1/1917
8/2/2006
8/7/1918
8/10/1949


Totally wiped out after spending the day reporting on the heat

Monday, July 5, 2010

Connecticut Heat Wave

Windsor Locks:
Monday: 94 degrees
Tuesday:97 degrees

Bridgeport:
Monday: 97 degrees
Tuesday: 93 degrees

One more day of temperatures in the 90s and we have an "official" heat-wave on our hands. Wednesday some places will get climb into the triple digits! So the "heat wave" title shouldn't be a problem. We could also challenge the current record high temperatures.

The record high in Windsor Locks Wednesday is 99, set in 1999
The record high in Bridgeport Wednesday is 98, set in 1999

Here are some heat wave stats I took from the National Weather Service:

The last 100 degree day in Hartford: August 2, 2006
The longest heat wave: 10 days starting July 24, 1995
Most recent heat wave: 7 days starting August 15, 2009
The state record high temperature: 106 degrees set in Danbury on July 15, 1995