March 26, 2010 in Features

The Slice: Ignore fine print, enjoy the sunshine

By The Spokesman-Review

Winter in Spokane is about the same as in Honolulu.

At least that’s one of the many ways you could misread a recently released analysis of the winter of 2009-2010.

The survey actually looks at the recently concluded season’s conditions compared to 30-year local averages. So it’s all relative.

But the press release practically begs to be misunderstood. It lists 10 places under the heading “Best Winter Weather U.S. Cities of 2009-2010 season.”

The subjective statisticians at work here took the liberty of defining desirable weather as warmer than usual.

So Spokane is No. 5 nationally, right behind Hawaii’s biggest city.

To keep this in perspective, it’s helpful to note that Miami Beach tops the list of “Worst” winter weather cities.

Anyway, I’m just glad our Convention & Visitors folks are scrupulously honest. Otherwise, it would be hard to resist the temptation to try to sell Spokane as some sort of Palm Springs of the north.

“Come up to the land of endless summer!”

“Fly with the snowbirds to one of America’s Top 5 winter-weather cities!”

“Spokane/Coeur d’Alene: The Fore Seasons Golfer’s Paradise!”

“Near nature, nearly perfect winter weather!”

“I’m dreaming of a short-sleeves Christmas.”

Of course, when reality reasserts itself with a vengeance next winter any comparisons to Honolulu would have to be shelved.

Though it might be mildly amusing for a visitor lured here by false advertising to borrow a line from “Casablanca.”

“What brought you to Spokane in January?”

“I came for the balmy winters.”

“What? Spokane doesn’t have balmy winters.”

“I was misinformed.”

Today’s Slice question: What Inland Northwest resident holds the record for having attended the most plays, concerts and readings in one year?

Write The Slice at P.O. Box 2160, Spokane, WA 99210; call (509) 459-5470; fax (509) 459-5098; e-mail I wonder how many TV watchers around here will miss the CBS show “Numbers.”

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