March, 2012

Potted Plants, The Weekend, And Allergies

March 23rd, 2012 at 8:48 am by under Weather

Plenty to talk about in the weather blog today.  I’ve got a few things to share with you.  First off….Lots of folks have been asking me if they can put out their potted plants.  It is about that time of year.  The average last freeze for our region is from March 20th through April 1st. 

Average Last Freeze Dates

 Notice that James City County up into the Middle Peninsula, and Northern Neck have a later date as they are farther north or inland.  It has been such a warm Winter that I think most folks will be safe.  I doubt we’ll see another freeze.  However, it is still possible to see a light frost yet.  This could happen up until the first week of April. So if you have some very fragile plants, then you should probably hold off until then.  Overall though I think we’ll be ok. 

Now on to the forecast.    Today high pressure will build in a little stronger.  We’ll have some upper level ridging in the jetstream along with slightly drier air moving into the region.  So expect fair skies today with only a stray shower or storm possible.  It will really warm up.  Highs will be in the low/mid 80s.  Even in the metro.  Today’s record high is 90 set back in 1907 when I guess a strong heat wave occurred according to the National Weather Service.  The average high is 60 degrees. 

Today's Weather Forecast

 The line of showers and storms along the Mississippi River Valley will stay west today.  It will move east tomorrow out ahead of the cold front and an upper level low.  Tomorrow the models show a fairly quiet morning with only a few isolated showers.  Rain chances will increase into the afternoon with strong storms moving in during the day. 

Tomorrow's Weather Forecast

 Up until yesterday it looked like the rain would be almost non-stop from Saturday afternoon through Sunday night.  Now it looks like there will be periods of showers and storms with some breaks expected both Saturday and Sunday morning.  At least that’s how it looks at this time.  Stay tuned for tweaks and updates.  The showers will continue into Early Monday.  Temperatures will still be warm tomorrow ( upper 70s) with southerly flow, but the temperatures will cool a bit (low 70s) on Sunday.  Highs will then be in the low/mid 60s Monday and Tuesday.  I like the warm temperatures, but it’s a little early to see several days in a row of 80s. 

Finally, I thought I’d throw in my annual “Tips To Beat Allergies” blog.  I along with many others, I suffer from seasonal allergies.  So here are a few things to keep in mind:

1.  You can stay indoors and close the windows, but some houses have been heating up lately.  You may actually need to run your air conditioner.  It is good to run your A.C. because it has a filter.  There are different types of filters that you can purchase to take out more and more particles out of the air.  If you don’t need the cool air, then you can run your fan on the A.C. unit.  It will still filter the indoor air.  You can also purchase an air filter unit.  Some folks have had luck with this, but I have not.  They range in price, but I’d check out the reviews on the product before buying.

2.  Wash your bedding and your clothing often.  Even if you keep your house closed up, you will still get pollen in your house.  It will also get on your clothing while outside.  so wash your items accordingly. 

3.  Clean your house.  It’s good to vacuum and dust your home often.  The pollen will settle on all of your surfaces along with dust.  This can easily get kicked up and get into the air.  So clean, clean, clean.  You can sweep your sidewalk.  Even wash it.  But the pollen will return in a short period of time.  So your efforts may be futile. 

4.  There are many medications to take for allergies.  Many of them are now over the counter.  They range from antihistamine eye drops all the way to allergy shots from the doctor.  Be careful though.  Some of those medications can make you very drousy.  If you will be driving then you should wait to try a new medication. 

5.  Some foods can also mimic allergens.  Some fruits, cheeses, and even teas can worsen allergy symptoms.  Even if you aren’t allergic to the food, some of them can promote histamines.  Here is an article with more details: Allergies/foods.

6.  If your symptoms are bad and prolonged, then you should see a doctor.  You can get tested to see what you are allergic to.  However, you will likely have to get many little shots/pin pricks for the test.  I got it done.  Not super painful, but definitely not comfortable.  It was good to know what I am really allergic to. 

7.  You may have pet allergies that are mild and don’t show up through the year.  However, it could add to your outdoor allergies during the Spring season.  So you may have to keep a little distance from them during the worst allergy days.   

8.  Your vehicle is another place where allergies can accumulate.  You can keep the windows closed and run the A.C. in there as well.  If you are really aggressive, then you can change the air filter in your car/truck about halfway through the allergy season. 

9.  There are many products for folks with allergies like special pillows and bedding.  Some people swear by them.  I haven’t used them much, but many people do use them.

10.  Lastly, some people swear that taking a teaspoonful of local honey gets rid of allergies.  I started taking some over a month ago, and I think it has helped my allergies a bit.  My symptoms are more occasional this year compared to the last few.  It might be a little late for you now, but it’s something to think about for next year.

I hope some of these tips help.  Have a great weekend everybody. 

Meteorologist: Jeremy Wheeler

Spring Has Sprung, So We’re Fresh, “On The Run!”

March 22nd, 2012 at 9:20 pm by under Sports, Uncategorized

The Latest Running News and Notes in Hampton Roads from Sportswrap, Running Reporter, Jon “Flex” Leiding

On The Run, Again!

What a Weekend!
The seasons have changed and The Shamrock Sportsfest weekend was an amazing way to get it rolling. Where do I point out excellence? How about Leprechaun Bob, who on Sunday called out every finishers name for nine hours.
I spoke with him afterward. his voice is doing just fine…


Starting Saturday with the 8k, Julius Kogo blazed the course in 22:34. Rachel Ward was the fastest female in 26:44. Williamsburg’s Andrew Budiansky led the locals from the “757″ in 26:20, while the always speedy, Renee High was the swiftest from Hampton Roads in 29:44.

Halfway There!
In the Half Marathon, Tesfaye Alemayehu crushed the competition with a blistering 1:03:38. That averages out to 4:51 a mile! That’s faster than some of the vehicles during rush hour around here! on the Ladies side, Helen Jemutai was just moments behind with a 1:11:27. Virginia Beach’s Stephanie Manny was the local Ladies Leader in an impressive 1:21:21, while Portsmouth’s Ryan Carroll continues his dominant ways with a Top 20 finish in 1:09:42. Like a fine wine, he seems to get better with age.

Ryan Caroll at Shamrock Half

And The Marathon…

Top Ten for Billy Chorey

Capping off the weekend of over 25,000 runnersand so many festive outfits, the Marathon went to Jynocel Basweti in 2:22:57, with the Women’s title going toTezata Dengersa with a 2:50:01. BIG LOVE to one of our good “Friends On The Run”, Billy Chorey, from Suffolk paced the locals with a Top Ten finish in 2:45:49. When I saw him, he was rolling around Mile Six. Congrats also to Gina McGee, also from Portsmouth. She claimed the Masters Female crown with an incredible 2:59:02 and fourth overall for the Ladies. Fast times are Everywhere!

Gina McGee On The Run!

Going Long!

If 26.2 miles is a bit long for you to run, our friends from Team Hoyt have a fresh view to check out. Big “shoutout” to Bern Roxer, who forwarded me the cool link of Tim Brown and Dennis Welch qualifying for the Boston Marathon through the Team Hoyt VB program. It’s pretty cool to see the runners go by using the time lapse technology, This is the first year locals from Team Hoyt will be in the Boston Marathon. Copy and paste this link to enjoy this fast paced video:

Thanks Guys!

Then That Guiness World Record Thing…

Major Congratulations to Tommy Neeson, Joel Bell, Drew Midland and Mark Manny for letting me be a part of a Guiness World Record broken for the fastest marathon by at least five people linked together. The old record, set in 2011 was 3:26:15. After dragging me around for 26.2 miles, we were able to drop that record by over twenty minutes in 3:06:04. I agreed to be part of the team less than a month before the race, when an injury sidelined one of the guys.

Originally. I came in with many goals. I wanted to finish, wanted to not be the one to let the team down, wanted to finish a marathon without stopping, and like a good friend says,”bring my best”. Mission accomplished on all of them. This was my second fastest marathon out of ten. To the guys- “Thanks” for taking this guy for a very cool “long run”.

Drew,Mark,Joel, Me & Tommy On The Run!

Now It Starts!

This week it all gets going with SO many races in very cool places. At the Oceanfront, the fourth annual Spartyka Wounded Warrier 5K takes off from 31st Street. Mt. Trashmore offers up the Cerebral Palsy 5K and One Mile Run. The Peninsula has “speed fever” as well, with the Yorktown Victory 8 Mile Run. Not enough for you? Sunday, head to the top! The top of Dominion Tower in Norfolk with the Step up for the Up Center Run
. You can choose to run up the 25 story building once, twice, or even four times.

For my duathlon and triathlon friends, we’re just a couple weeks from the Virginia Duathlon in Surry. Hope your training is coming along well. Running, Swimming, and Biking compliment each other very well.

To learn more about these races and more, check out,, and


As always, we can’t do this without you. Keep up the great work and I’ll keep sharing more wonderful efforts and stories. If you have a story idea, like our new friend “On The Run”, Bern Rexer, drop me a line. Hit me up with a comment here or email me the info to

Time to go for now, but look for our blog, weekly here at Keep training and racing well. Maybe, I’ll catch you… “On The Run!

We're History "On The Run!"

On the Run with Sportswrap Running Reporter, Jon “Flex” Leiding only on

It May be Spring, but it Feels more like Summer

March 22nd, 2012 at 3:49 pm by under Weather

If you had a chance to get outside today you might have seen a view like this:

Fair Weather

Temperatures have been near 80 degrees in many areas today. We had a high temperature at the Norfolk Airport at 81 degrees. Its not just the temperature today, its also the humidity. The dew points are not anywhere off the charts but for this time of year they are high. The dew points have been mostly in the low 60s today across the region. Normally we see dew points in the 40s to 50s this time of year.

Dew Points

With the additional moisture, if you were in the Chesapeake/Portsmouth Area yesterday you probable noticed the thunderstorm in the afternoon. Today there is a slight chance for a stray popup storm, but for most of the area things will stay quiet.  For our Friday a ridge type pattern will move in which will basically keep the atmosphere stable.

A Possible Popup Thunderstorm

See the line of showers from Jackson to Chicago. That area of activity will slowly move into Hampton Roads and probably get here on Saturday.

Storms Move in Saturday

We could have some stronger storms on Saturday if the timing stays on track…something we will keep our eye on.

Meteorologist Jeff Edmondson

History Lesson On The Road

March 22nd, 2012 at 3:24 pm by under News, Personalities

It sits against a rural canvas of green fields and unkempt woods that line US 158.  At first glance you think this tidy white structure is  one of the many houses of worship that dot the North Carolina countryside.  But as I was driving toward the Outer Banks, taking various snapshots along the way for my monthly “Through the Lens” feature– which airs on The Hampton Roads Show,  I did a double-take when I saw this wooden structure sitting on bricks over what appeared to be freshly raked dirt.  I turned my car around, and sped back to this gleaming wood building, and noticed a sign laying by the building laced with freshly turned earth.  It read: “Help Us Restore the Old Jarvisburg Colored School 1867-1950″

I walked around the simple building in awe of the history that must have passed through these plain double doors.  It was the center of learning for African American students for more than 80 years–one of five “colored” schools in Currituck County until they consolidated in 1950.   The buildings were then sold off by the county.  Finally in 1966, the Currituck County School Board approved the Freedom on Choice School Plan following the 1964 Civil Right’s Act. This began the consolidation of schools into an integrated system.

These pictures were my favorite on this most recent “Through the Lens” odessey.   Currituck County Comissioner Paul O’Neal says the county has already put more than $500,000 toward its renovation, but the job is not quite finished, “we’ re going to to have the rest of the building restored and opened as a museum.  We have about $200,000 committed to finishing the interior.”   Though this project has faced some delays in recent years, O’Neal hopes to have the museum opened by the end of this year.  

The restoration project began in 1998 when alumni began efforts to save the school.  Peggy Birkemeier, senior regional associate for North Carolina Community Foundation says it still has to raise about $30,000 to furnish the museum, which she says “will show historical information about all five schools from the Civil War to desegregation.”  You can find more information about the Jarvisburg Colored School here:


More Wetness

March 21st, 2012 at 10:13 am by under Weather

We had some showers and storms survive from yesterday.  Overnight they put down some heavy rain in a few locations, and even lasted into the morning hours.  Here are the radar estimated rain totals from Super Doppler 10 up until about 8 this morning:

Estimated Rain Totals

 I talked to my weather watcher Pam in Gloucester.  She said that she had 2.5″ from last night.  The rain was heavy in several places this morning.  On top of that we had thick fog once again with more school delays. because of it.  It took a little longer for folks to get to work this morning to say the least. 

Since we had the rain this morning, I don’t see a lot of instability shaping up for the afternoon.  The models don’t really account for this.  So I think we could see some pop up storms later today outside of the areas that had rain this morning or at least on the edges of that area.   We still do have weak high pressure around, but the amount of moisture in the area is high.  It’s enough to create that fog and showers.   A huge upper level low over Texas is causing flooding rains over parts of the deep south.  This will help some of the recent drought areas out there, but it’s too bad that it’s feast or famine for them. 

The Nation's Weather Pattern

With the upper level flow around the upper level low (I’m not trying to rap here),we have had nice ridging and warm temperatures lately.  This will continue tomorrow, and it should amplify on Friday.  That basically means that the upper level pattern should promote sinking air and therefore decrease the rain chances.  That feature and surface winds from the southwest will put high temperatures up into the 80s.  By Saturday though the upper level system will approach from the west.  I’m still optimistic that Saturday morning will be ok, but from midday Saturday through Sunday we are talking rain, rain, and more rain.  Perhaps a couple of inches.  Stay tuned.

Wet Weekend Forecast

Along with the rain we will see cooler temperatures.  Highs will be in the upper 60s to low 70s Saturday through Monday.  We will definitely dry out on Monday. 

Meteorologist: Jeremy Wheeler

Humidity’s Effects

March 20th, 2012 at 8:14 am by under Weather

Humidity is the word of the day today.  For the next couple of days it will be impacting our area with fog in the mornings and a few showers in the afternoons.  It will also create some bad hair days for the ladies.  Sorry!  This morning we started with thick fog in the region.  It came and went in many locations.  Here was the views from Armada Hoffler Tower at Town Center in Virginia Beach:

Fog On Tower Cam

 There were several school delays due to the fog.  It was really bad over parts of North Carolina and on the Eastern Shore. It thickened up in the metro between 6:30 and 7:30am.  It is expected to burn off later this morning.  It will return tonight, but it may not be as thick tomorrow morning as we’ll probably have more cloud cover. 

There were a few showers west of the viewing area this morning.  Otherwise it was quiet locally.  Later this afternoon we’ll see a few pop-up showers and storms.  We did have an isolated one pop up yesterday near the Great Dismal Swamp and it moved east before dissipating.  That was about 5-10% coverage.  Today we’ll see about 30% coverage in the area.  So that is more than just a slight chance. 

Today’s Forecast

 High temperatures will be in the mid 70s with upper 70s to near 80 inland.  High pressure will be a little stronger on Thursday and Friday.  This will warm us up even more (upper 70s with low/mid 80s inland), and it will reduce the rain chances to 10%.  Late Saturday we’ll have an upper level low approach from the west.  It is a spinning mass over cooler air in the upper levels that makes things unstable underneath it.  That system will create a higher chance for showers and storms.  At this time it looks like this feature will sit right over us and create a very wet day on Sunday.  It will probably be a washout.  Sometimes these cutoff upper level lows move slower than predicted, but at this point it would really have to slow down to push the rain chances back to Monday.

Meteorologist: Jeremy Wheeler

Cold West, Warm Central/East U.S.

March 19th, 2012 at 8:35 am by under Weather

Today there will be a big difference in temperatures from west to east across the country.  Snow and cold will dominate the Rockies, but warmth will prevail over about 2/3rds of the U.S.  Highs are still well above the average from the Plains to the East Coast. 

Forecast High Temperatures

 Locally, we’ll have mild temperatures, but the stronger heating will take place west of us.  The reason for that is due to the onshore flow that will persist over the next few days.  This will do a couple of things.  It will keep the coastal temperatures a little cooler than inland locations.  It will also allow us to pull in some moisture from the Atlantic.  So spotty showers are possible during the day, with patchy fog at night.  Usually an area of high pressure keeps us clear, but the center of the high will be pretty far offshore.  So the rain chances for the next few days are not zero, but they are low.

Today's Forecast Map

 This weather pattern won’t change much over the next few days.  The high will be offshore.  An upper level low will reside over the central U.S. and will create showers and storms there.  Again, warm weather will reside over much of the U.S., but due to our onshore flow locally we’ll see mild weather, but not hot weather. 

The average high is in the upper 50s.  We’ll be well above that for the next 7 days. 

Meteorologist: Jeremy Wheeler


Its “Sun”day. So where is the sun?

March 18th, 2012 at 8:41 am by under Weather

We started our morning a bit foggy thanks to the low temperatures and the high dewpoints. Basically what happened late last night and this morning is we had the fog develop and in many areas it began to lift into low level clouds. Now for this Sunday, I am expecting to see these clouds continue to lift and eventually break apart to allow some sunshine to peak through. Temperatures today should be in the upper 60s by the water and near 70 inland.

Front to our South

The rain will be off to our west or south again for today as that stationary boundary sits in that area. This front will begin to lift to the north overnight tonight and tomorrow which might help to produce some patchy fog again this evening. Tomorrow a few showers will be possible as this front is back across Hampton Roads.


We could have a few scattered showers tomorrow, but as the front continues to move north it will begin to act like a warm front so we will have warmer air pushing itself back into the region throughout the week. I am not expecting any big spike in temperatures, but a modest increase to the lower 70s for highs could be expected.

Enjoy your Sunday!

Meteorologist Jeff Edmondson

A Mix of Sun and Clouds for St. Patrick’s Day

March 17th, 2012 at 9:17 am by under Weather

We had some green on the radar this morning from a few lingering showers from yesterday’s Thunderstorms. For today I am not expecting much to any rainfall across Hampton Roads. Temperatures will be cooler though if you will be participating in the Parade or the Marathon.


The Stationary Front will stay to our south today, so we should be dry but cooler. In terms of seeing clouds there will be a mix of them with sunshine for areas south of Hampton and into North Carolina. For the Peninsula and north partly sunny skies are expected. Notice how the blue arrows will be out of the northeast? Cooler air from New York and Maine will keep out highs in the mid 60s by the water, but in the 70s inland today.

Tonight some patchy fog is possible with lows near 50. I am expecting temperatures to be a little bit cooler tomorrow, but still above average with highs near 65.

Into early next week some rain will be possible with highs near 70 degrees. There isn’t a day next week that looks like a washout, but the majority of these days we will see chances for rain.

Have a good St. Patrick’s Day!

Meteorologist Jeff Edmondson


St. Patrick’s Day Weekend

March 16th, 2012 at 7:39 am by under Weather

Before we go into the forecast, I have to talk about yesterday.  As Jeff Edmondson mentioned in the previous blog, we hit 87 degrees.  That easily broke the record of 84 set back in 1973.  Due to the extra heating and a weak back door cold front, a few showers and storms developed yesterday afternoon.  Today we will have more clouds and more humidity.  So high temperatures are expected to be more in the low/mid 80s.  However, with the humidity it will be a bit more uncomfortable.  Later this afternoon we’ll develop some isolated showers and storms once again.  Then the rain chances will increase into the evening hours.  Overnight there will be more rain into early Saturday.  The good news is that most of the rain on the models will be early in the day tomorrow, then the showers are expected to move inland and south.  So  the rest of the weekend appears rain free at this time.  We’ll have to watch though as a weak stationary front could linger a little longer, which could potentially change the forecast.  For now the Sunday forecast is partly cloudy and cooler.  Temperatures will be in the 50s during the mornings.  We’ll see highs in the 60s.  Actually, the models have really started cooling down Sunday.  So I’ve lowered the high to the low/mid 60s.  I’m hoping it doesn’t get lowered too much more than that despite the models now showing highs in the upper 50s.  Next week we’ll have highs in the upper 60s to low 70s.  I had the forecast dry for next week, but the latest GFS is throwing in some rain for Monday. 

The weather (overall) looks good for the Shamrock Marathon.  Comfortable temps and only a little rain early Saturday in Virginia Beach.  The St. Patrick’s Day parade should be ok as long as the rain doesn’t linger.  For now I’m expecting the rain to push south of Norfolk by 10am.  At least it won’t be cold like last year.  Have a good weekend!

Meteorologist: Jeremy Wheeler