See an enlarged the map of Ireland here.
Over the last 19 years (inc. 2016), this has been the weirdest day for weather in West Michigan! The average high temperature for St. Patrick’s Day in Grand Rapids MI is 45°. After three years in a row with temperatures well above normal on St. Patrick’s Day (2010 – 2012), 3/17/13 and 3/17/14 were 15° and 14° degrees cooler than average in G.R. Then we had two years that were a little above average…Two years ago the high was 50 and last year we had a high of 49. Grand Rapids had five consecutive years that were significantly colder than average from 2005-2009.
Here are the high temperatures for St. Patrick’s Day for G.R. starting in 1998: 36°, 60°, 37°, 39°, 39°, 68°, 33°, 35°, 28°, 38°, 37°, 71°, 65°, 78°, 30°, 31°, 50° and 49°. Until the last two years…it’s been either real warm or real cold on St. Patrick’s Day in W. Michigan.
Flashback: For nearly 30 years, the shortest St. Patrick’s Day Parade was in Conklin. I know that Fenian’s was sold.
>>Inside woodtv.com: “World’s shortest parade’ returns for 28th year “
Which brings me to the weather of Ireland. Just like the wind coming off Lake Michigan moderates the climate of West Michigan, making the lakeshore cooler in spring/summer and warmer in winter…the same is true in Ireland. The wind off the ocean keeps the temperature fairly constant. The difference between the average high temperature in Dublin in January (45F) and July (67F) is only 22 degrees. The warmest temperature in Dublin in calendar year 2008 was just 72F (you won’t find a lot of backyard swimming pools in Ireland). The coolest temperature all that year was 25F. In the winter of 2013-14 the lowest temperature in Dublin was 28 (reached several times). Dublin only recorded 1/10″ of snowfall in 2008 – that coming on April 6th. There were two other days with trace amounts. The city did have 1/10″ of snow on 3/11/13 and trace amounts on the 12th and 13th. Dublin is actually 700 miles north of Grand Rapids. Despite it’s northerly location (summer daylight grows to 17 hours long in June), winters are milder due to the influence of the relatively warm Gulf Stream current.
Ireland is the 20th biggest island in the world (third biggest in Europe) and is just slightly smaller than South Carolina. Rainfall is frequent and mostly light. Dublin records thunder an average of only four days per year. The average high and low temperature for Dublin on 3/17 is 50/36.
Here’s a St. Patrick’s Day Quiz (I got 24 out of 30). Here’s an Irish Blessing and some cool pics. of Ireland. Armagh’s Cathedral lit up in Green. According to http://www.ancestry.com – I’m a whopping 1% Irish.
From the Confession of (St.) Patrick (of Ireland): “”Patrick the sinner, an unlearned man to be sure. None should ever say that it was my ignorance that accomplished any small thing, it was the gift of God.”