The Weekly Newspaper serving the citizens of Morenci, Mich., Fayette, Ohio, and surrounding areas.

  • Snow.2
    FIRST SNOW—Heavy, wet flakes piled deep on tree branches—and windshields—as the area received its first significant snowfall of the season. “Usually it begins with a dusting or two,” said George Isobar, Morenci’s observer for the National Weather Service, “but this time it came with a vengeance.” By the end of the day Saturday, a little over four inches of snow was on the ground. Now comes the thaw with temperatures in the 40s and 50s for three days.
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    SKEWERS, gumdrops, and marshmallows are all that’s needed to create interesting shapes and designs for Layla McDowell Saturday at Stair District Library’s “Sculptamania!” Open House. The program featuring design games and materials is one part of a larger project funded by a $7,500 Curiosity Creates grant from Disney and the American Library Association. Additional photos are on page 7.
    Morenci marching band members took to the field Friday night dressed for Halloween during the Bulldog’s first playoff game. Morenci fans had a bit of a scare until the fourth quarter when the Bulldogs scored 30 points to leave Lenawee Christian School behind. Whiteford visits Morenci this Friday for the district championship game. From the left is Clayton Borton, Morgan Merillat and James O’Brien.
    DNA PUZZLE—Mitchell Storrs and Wyatt Mohr tackle a puzzle representing the structure of DNA. There’s only one correct way for all the pieces to fit. It’s one of the new materials that can be used in both biology and chemistry classes, said teacher Loretta Cox.
  • Front.tar.wide
    A TRAFFIC control worker stands in the middle of Morenci’s Main Street Tuesday morning, waiting for the next flow of vehicles to be let through from the west. The dusty gravel surface was sealed with a layer of tar, leaving only the application of paint for new striping. The project was completed in conjunction with county road commission work west of Morenci.
  • Front.pull
    JUNIORS Jazmin Smith and Trevor Corkle struggle against a team from the sophomore class Friday during the annual tug of war at the Homecoming Games pep rally. Even the seniors struggled against the sophomores who won the competition. At the main course of the day, the Bulldog football team struggled against Whiteford in a homecoming loss.
    YOUNG soccer players surived a chilly morning Saturday in Morenci’s PTO league. From the left is Emma Cordts, Wayne Corser, Carter and Levi Seitz, Briella York and Drew Joughin. Two more weeks of soccer remain for this season.
  • Front.ropes
    BOWEN BAUMGARTNER of Morenci makes his way across a rope bridge constructed by the Tecumseh Boy Scout troop Sunday at Lake Hudson Recreation Area. The bridge was one of many challenges, displays and games set up for the annual Youth Jamboree by the Michigan DNR. Additional photos on are the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.homecoming Court
    One of four senior candidates will be crowned the fall homecoming queen during half-time of this week’s Morenci-Whiteford football game. In the back row (left to right) is exchange student Kinga Vidor (her escort will be Caylob Alcock), seniors Alli VanBrandt (escorted by Sam Cool), Larissa Elliott (escorted by Clayton Borton), Samantha Wright (escorted by JJ Elarton) and Justis McCowan (escorted by Austin Gilson), and exchange student Rebecca Rosenberger (escorted by Garrett Smith). Front row freshman court member Allie Kaiser (escorted by Anthony Thomas), sophomore Marlee Blaker (escorted by Nate Elarton) and junior Cheyenne Stone (escorted by Dominick Sell).
  • Front.park.lights
    GETTING READY—Jerad Gleckler pounds nails to secure a string of holiday lights on the side of the Wakefield Park concession stand while other members of the Volunteer Club and others hold them in place. The volunteers showed up Sunday afternoon to string lights at the park. The decorating project will continue this Sunday. Denise Walsh is in charge of the effort this year.
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George Isobar looks at January weather 02.10.10

Written by David Green.


What January didn’t give, February will deliver. At least that’s the forecast.

“January was light on snow,” said Morenci climate observer George Isobar, “but only about three inches below average. What was really surprising about last month was the overall lack of precipitation.”

In local records going back 35 years, January was the driest on record.

“There were two years in the past decade that produced only .75 inches,” Isobar said, “but last month was even a little drier with just .73.”

Measurable precipitation fell on only seven days, he said, with the most falling Jan. 8 with .31 inches of melted precipitation. That fell in the form of 3.9 inches of snow—most of the total 5.8 inches measured.

The snow depth stood at just under five inches for a day, Isobar said, then settled a little for a depth of four inches for the next six days.

“As dry as it was, and with as little snow as there was, it’s surprising the ground was white for 17 days out of 31,” Isobar said.

There was also some freezing rain on two occasions, Isobar said, but nothing much.

“Frozen drizzle is more like it,” he added.


Six single-digit mornings and a low of -3 were recorded, but the average for the month was still a little above normal.

The National Weather Service office in Toledo put the monthly average at 0.4° above normal.

“There were plenty of chilly mornings,” Isobar said, “and just about half of the daily averages for the month were below normal. In fact, six were double-digit below. But from Jan. 13 to 25, every day was above average.”

The high of 50° was recorded Jan. 25, but the break in the weather was brief.

“I don’t know if I’d call it a January thaw,” Isobar said. “Just one day at 50 and one at 42. Then it plunged back down.”

The low of -3° was recorded on the morning of Jan. 10.

FEBRUARY—The average snowfall for February in the past three decades comes in at 7.8 inches.

“We’ve had 1.7 inches so far,” Isobar said, “and if the predictions are close to accurate, we could have more than 7.8 inches by the time you’re reading these words.”

Up to 11 inches of snow was predicted for the area Tuesday and into Wednesday.

February generally produces less snow than December and January, Isobar said, but there have certainly been exceptions.

“We’ve topped 16 inches a couple of times, along with a 15 and a 14,” he said, “but it’s never come close to the other big months.”

And for temperatures?

Every day of the month has a record of below-zero, he said, except for one. The record for Feb. 29 is only 0°, but of course there is no Feb. 29 this year.

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