Best weekend of summer? How weather trends forecast what you’ll buy

Picture Perfect

Like the Old Milwaukee commercials of yesteryear say, “It doesn’t get any better than this.”

All weather is subjective, but this may be the “best” weekend of summer for many Minnesotans. Plenty of sun, temps in the 80s, balmy breezes and still warm lake water temps? Yes, maybe it doesn’t get any better.

Our weekend weather will delight, then a late summer heat surge builds in next week. “Summer on a stick” for the State Fair? Just in time.

Also today, did you know that private weather companies and outlets like the Weather Channel get paid to tell retailers how you’ll likely shop in different weather patterns? Yep. It turns out that weather common sense means dollars and cents for retailers.

As for us, the value of 80s and sunshine one of our all too quickly fleeting summer weekends?


80s rule this weekend. (Image: Twin Cities NWS)

Summer Sequel

We’re on the upswing back into summer as temps trend upward the next few days. Here’s a look at the numbers by the National Weather Service in the Twin Cities:

536 wxs

North Shore anyone?

It’s hard to call the weather of the past 3 months “summer” on the North Shore. But this might be the best weekend of the year in places like Duluth and Grand Marais. Here are the numbers from the Duluth NWS.

(Image: Duluth NWS)

Heat builds next week

Our southwest flow kicks in the next few days…and temps will respond into the 90s. Could we be as hot as 95 by next Wednesday? Dew points in the tropical 70s next week? Rain chances on the 1st day of the Fair? The Euro model seems to think so.

(Image: Norwegian Met Institute data via WeatherSpark)

How weather trends forecast what you’ll buy

It’s common sense. We all know snow blower sales spike when the first good snow flies in November or December.

But there’s a bigger science — and an art — behind how retailers use weather data to manage inventory, supply chains and anticipate sales to maximize revenues.

Image: Wall Street Journal

Heres’ an interesting piece from the Wall Street Journal on how the Weather Channel is expanding it’s meteorological support business for retailers and other businesses. Here’s an excerpt:

The Weather Channel knows the chance for rain in St. Louis on Friday, what the heat index could reach in Santa Fe on Saturday and how humid Baltimore may get on Sunday.

It also knows when you’re most likely to buy bug spray.

The enterprise is transforming from a cable network viewers flip to during hurricane season into an operation that forecasts consumer behavior by analyzing when, where and how often people check the weather. Last fall the Weather Channel Cos. renamed itself the Weather Co. to reflect the growth of its digital-data business.

Company scientists found that the first day of above-average heat in Chicago results in a surge in air-conditioner sales. Meanwhile, in often-muggy Atlanta, people sweat out hotter-than-average temperatures for two days before making a run to the appliance store. “The old paradigm of business and weather was cope and avoid. With technology, the paradigm is now anticipate and exploit,” says Paul Walsh, a former United States Air Force meteorologist who is now the Weather Co.’s vice president for weather analytics.