National Weather Center – Norman, OK

June 3, 2017

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(Photo credit: ontheworldmap.com)

My first stop on my first full day in the Oklahoma City area was to travel south, about 20 miles, to the town of Norman (at the bottom of the map above).  Here I would visit the National Weather Center.

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Surprise, surprise – I am a total Weather Channel geek (although I can’t receive it under my current media configuration at home).  While TWC is located in Atlanta, they often reference the “Storm Prediction Center” at the National Weather Center here in Norman.

The National Weather Center, located on the campus of University of Oklahoma, is a joint effort between them, the National Weather Service and NOAA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

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I couldn’t take a tour (I believe they only do them on certain days, plus I hadn’t signed up in advance and “walk-in” tours are not permitted) but Security did let me inside the building, restricting my access to a common area on the ground floor.  I was here on a Saturday and most of the staff wouldn’t be working, plus there was an art exhibit which I could walk through.

I did see these examples of tornado monitoring devices:

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And I chuckled to myself when I saw the name of the coffee shop, located on the ground floor:

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The name is reference to the movie “Twister”.  And I swear to God this is true – when I got back to my Airbnb that night “Twister” was showing on one of the cable channels I could receive!  I caught it just in time to see the “flying cow” scene.

Truth is sometimes stranger than fiction….