Saturday’s Skilling Fermilab severe weather seminar to be streamed online

Tom Skilling hosts the 36th annual Tornado and Severe Weather Seminar at Fermilab

For 35 years, broadcast meteorologist Tom Skilling of Chicago television station WGN has hosted an annual severe weather educational event in an auditorium on the campus of Fermilab, a U.S. Department of Energy particle physics laboratory in the Chicago suburb of Batavia.

The event is very popular among weather geeks and the members of the general public. I’ve heard many people talk about it, but have never attended, because four hours seems a long drive for a half-day event.

This year, however, WGN will stream the entire event live on the Web. And the speaker line-up is impressive:

  • Louis Uccellini, Director, National Weather Service
  • Russell Schneider, Director of the National Weather Service’s Storm Prediction Center, Norman, Oklahoma
  • Chris Strager, Central Region Director, National Weather Service
  • Donald J. Wuebbles, Harry E. Preble Professor of Atmospheric Science at the University of Illinois
  • Doug Sisterson & Dr. Seth Darling of Argonne National Laboratory, authors of the book “How to Change Minds on our Changing Climate”
  • Ed Fenelon, Meteorologist in Charge-National Weather Service-Chicago
  • Mike Bardou, Warning Coordination Meteorologist, NWS-Chicago
  • Brian Smith, Warning Coordination Meteorologist-National Weather Service Forecast Office-Valley, NE
  • Sean Lewis, WGN-TV anchor/reporter
  • Kimberly A. Smith, Director Emergency Preparedness, Commonwealth Edison

This year’s event is Saturday, April 2, from noon to 4:30 p.m. CDT. A free ticket is required and according to the event website, the tickets are gone, except for some that the station held back for promotional purposes.

But the station says it will stream the entire event live on You can also see tweets from the seminar with the hash tag #SkillingFermi.

If you can’t watch the seminar live, check the TV station’s website afterward. In past years, it has posted video segments from the event.

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