Today in New York City Weather History: St. Patrick's Day (March 17)
In the years since 1970 St. Patrick's Day has been the average date of the winter's last measurable snow in Central Park. However, it's occurred as early as Jan. 18 (in 2020) and as late as April 19 (in 1983).
This was the sixteenth day in a row with a low in the teens or 20s. The average was 25°, with readings ranging from 19° (today) and 29°.
What was already a very cold day (high of 26°) became even colder when a reinforcement of Arctic air moved in after dark, and by 11 PM the temperature had fallen to 9°. This was the first single-digit reading in March in the 20th century (there were 15 occurrences between 1872 and 1891). There have been five more since then (the most recent in 1967). Winds gusting close to 30 mph at night produced sub-zero wind chill readings.
This was the seventh day in a row with highs in the 30s. The average high during these days was 36°, ten degrees colder than average.
Today, with a high of 60°/low of 40°, was the seventeenth day in a row with above average temperatures. During this two-and-a-half week period, temperatures were nearly ten degrees above average. (At the time this would be the fifth mildest March on record; it's since fallen to twelfth.)
Today's high of 70° made this the mildest St. Paddy's Day since 1945 (when the temperature reached 75°, the warmest on record). This was also the seventh year in a row in which no precipitation fell on the date - a record streak.
Since records began, the high has reached 70°+ just three times on St. Patrick's Day - and two of those times occurred this year and last. Today's high was 72° - ten degrees cooler than yesterday (but still 23 degrees above average). Rain moved in mid-afternoon and amounted to 0.67".
The 0.75" of precipitation that fell today was the most on St. Patrick's Day since 1972 (when 1.20" was measured). Then the rain changed to snow and 0.8" accumulated - the most snow to fall on the holiday since 1967's three inches (the most for the date). This wintry mix came less than a week after the "Storm of the Century" dumped 10.6" on the City. This would be the last measurable snowfall of the winter.
Today's high was just 37°, thirteen degrees colder than average and the fourth year in a row that was colder than the preceding St. Patrick's Day.
Today's high of 31° (nineteen degrees colder than average) was the first time since 1967 that the high temperature stayed below freezing on St. Patrick's Day. (By contrast, last year's St. Paddy's Day was 38 degrees warmer.) In addition to the chill, 0.5" of snow fell - the eleventh time measurable snow fell on the holiday (since 1869). It came the day after a winter storm dumped 3.5" of snow on the City.
The morning low of 25° was the coldest reading on the holiday since 1994's 21°.
For the third year in a row the high temperature went above 60° on the holiday, the first time it happened on St. Patrick's Day in more than 20 years (1989 thru 1991). It was also the fourth year in a row with above average temperatures, something that hadn't happened since the 1930s.
A high of 38°/low of 29°, nine degrees colder than average, made this the chilliest St. Paddy's Day since 2007, when it was 38°/25°.
Today was even colder than last year, with a high/low of 35°/23°, making it the coldest St. Patrick's Day in ten years. A winter storm, which dumped 6" of snow on DC, stayed just to our south for the second time this month.
Although today's high of 48° was close to average, the morning low was a nippy 27°. This broke a twelve-day string of days that had lows that ranged from 30° to 33°. It was also the first low colder than 30° in a month (since 2/17), the coldest since 2/13 (26°), and the coldest reading of March.
This was the 16th day in a row with no measurable precipitation, matching last year's longest dry streak in September; these were the longest dry spells since an 18-day streak in the fall of 2017. Save
You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.