For most of us in Chicago, Memorial Day weekend is the unofficial start of summer season, which lasts until Labor Day.
It's the season of farmers' markets and festivals and outdoor events. It seems every weekend there are block parties, yard sales, weddings and parties, too. It's the season of al fresco dining, and concerts under the stars.
For some, summer started last weekend with the Printers' Row Lit Festival, Blues Fest in Millennium Park and the Old Town Art Fair. I can remember working the Printers' Row Lit Fest, and the weather could be a challenge. There was usually rain at some point. It could be cool and damp or hot and steamy, sometimes both in one day, like this past weekend.
We've had rain delay summers before. Here's a post from 3 years ago!
June 1 is the start of meteorological summer. According to NWSChicago, the first 10 days in June here have seen temperatures below average, cool and rainy, and the nights have been under 60 degrees. Meanwhile, there has been snow in Idaho and Montana, as reported by the Capital Weather Gang in the Washington Post.
Now we are approaching the summer solstice on June 21, when astronomical summer begins. These are the longest days in the northern hemisphere. The hottest days typically occur about one month later, in mid-July.
Summer is here, with baseball and watermelons and strawberries, ice cream and mosquitos, thunderstorms and nights too hot to sleep. It's what we live for all winter when we're walking on the ice. In summer, ice cubes melt in the glasses.
Yes, tonight summer begins. I saw the first fireflies!
You can read more about fireflies here.