Archive for Thursday, June 5, 2008

Expect severe weather today

Officials worry about music fest campers amid 1974 conditions

Lara Barricklow, front, Springfield, Mo., and her mother Christy Barricklow, Warrensburg, Mo., work to assemble their tent poles as clouds begin to cover the sky Wednesday evening, June 4, 2008 at Clinton Lake State Park.

Lara Barricklow, front, Springfield, Mo., and her mother Christy Barricklow, Warrensburg, Mo., work to assemble their tent poles as clouds begin to cover the sky Wednesday evening, June 4, 2008 at Clinton Lake State Park.

June 5, 2008


2008 Wakarusa Festival

The fifth annual Wakarusa Music and Camping Festival winds down tonight. But this afternoon large crowds enjoyed the sunshine and great music of several bands.

2008 Wakarusa Music and Camping Festival

The fifth annual Wakarusa Music and Camping Festival starts on June 5th and runs through June 8th. Organizers are planning on more than 13,500 guests, which would make Clinton State Park the second-largest city in Douglas County until the festival wraps up. See videos, photo galleries, the Wak Talk blog, Best Bets, and more about the Wakarusa Fest.

Past Event
Wakarusa Music & Camping Festival 2008, Day 1

featuring Buckethead / Lotus / Bettye LaVette / and more…

  • When: Thursday, June 5, 2008, 10 a.m.
  • Where: Clinton State Park, Clinton Lake, Lawrence
  • Cost: $49 - $469
  • More on this event....

A threat of severe weather and a possible tornado outbreak tonight has Lawrence law enforcement agencies on high alert.

That's because 13,000 people are expected to be at Clinton Lake State Park today for the fifth annual Wakarusa Festival. Many festivalgoers camp out during the four-day event at the park, which has few exits and little shelter.

Lt. Kari Wempe, a spokeswoman for the Douglas County Sheriff's Office, said the state park is "not equipped to handle" or shelter thousands of people in park buildings.

The sheriff's department will work with festival organizers to spread the word if harsh weather approaches.

"If severe weather actually comes about, we'll work with the Douglas County Sheriff to notify the patrons through stage announcements, messages from the squad cars going through the campgrounds and any way we can communicate with them as possible," said Nathan Prenger, Wakarusa site director.

If just a severe thunderstorm blows through, Prenger advised people to seek shelter in their cars. If there is a tornado, he encouraged people to get down in a low-lying area.

On Wednesday, the National Weather Service warned of a storm system that could produce a tornado outbreak in the Great Plains tonight.

Some weather experts said the conditions are similar to a June 8, 1974, storm when 39 tornadoes touched down in the southern Plains and killed 22 people, including six in Emporia.

Jennifer Schack, 6News meteorologist, said she and other local meteorologists have kept an eye on the storm this week.

Schack said she expected severe storms and possible tornadoes to hit central Kansas during the late afternoon. She predicted the storms would lessen in severity as they approached the Lawrence area.

"As the storms move eastward and as we head into the evening, they could start merging together, which would bring the tornadic threat down but not eliminate that tornadic threat," she said.

Some festivalgoers who purchased VIP tickets and set up campsites Wednesday were ready to take on the weather.

Christine Lowell, Detroit, who was in Lawrence for her first Wakarusa Festival, said her plan was to head to her van for shelter.

"There's nothing we really can do but hit the van and hope for the best," she said.


gr 9 years, 9 months ago

You know it's coming - sound the alarm!That way, we can hear complaints about how it was too early and no one paid attention to it.

countrygirl 9 years, 9 months ago

You know it's coming so use some common sense. Check the batteries in the radio and the flashlight and keep an eye on the kids playing outside. The sky isn't falling (at least not yet!) so no need to panic but there's no excuse for not being prepared when you have this much advance warning.

countrygirl 9 years, 9 months ago

Dang Pywacket--I just got coffee all over my keyboard! LOL!!!

cloudbursting 9 years, 9 months ago

Hi all,If we lose power tonight, what is a good radio station to tune into for information while we're huddled under the mattress waiting for all of this to pass? I'm from Wichita and I remember my parents taking me and my sisters to the basement where we all listened to KFDI throughout the storm. They had these great mobile units that reported continuously. Made us all feel better. Is there anything like that in Lawrence? Does 6 News broadcast on the radio? Any info. will be much appreciated. Thanks!

Confrontation 9 years, 9 months ago

Although I'm not a big fan of the Wak festival, I do hope that everyone is safe. Afterall, they are all someone's son, daughter, brother, mother, etc. For up-to-date & live coverage (that you sure won't find on Channel 6!), check out the WIBW weather site and click on Streaming Video:

stargazer 9 years, 9 months ago

Anyone that has a weather radio. Do you actually hear the "test" that is suppose to be announced every wednesday? I bought one a couple weeks ago, and brought to work last wed. no announcement/test.

cfdxprt 9 years, 9 months ago

alm,The wife and I got one and we couldn't get the Topeka NWS only the Pleasant Hill one, so we were well aware of what was going on in Missouri and JoCo, but not here. We ended up returning ours. Someone posted here a while ago a map from NOAA showing areas where the Topeka station didn't have coverage and it was a large swath of Lawrence. Sorry I don't have the link, although the map was zoomed out enough it was hard to tell for specific areas in Lawrence. I'd suggest getting one, but save your receipt, ours turned out to be just a nuisance not a help.On another note, it'd be nice if Sunflower got it right today and the severe weather warnings didn't switch back and forth between the warning and a blank screen with no sound. You only get to hear half of what their saying.

Boston_Corbett 9 years, 9 months ago

Douglas County now officially has its Watch...TORNADO WATCH 466 IS IN EFFECT UNTIL 1200 AM CDT

mistygreen 9 years, 9 months ago

I would recommend this weather radio: Oregon Scientific Public Alert Emergency Portable Weather RadioModel #: ORE WR601I've purchased 3 in the last month. The only place I could find them are at Circuit City, in KC. The are ac/dc and portable. Which means you can take it with you in the car or outdoors, or to your basement. You can program up to 6 counties, and only get the watches and warnings, so it's not going off all the time. I live in eastern Douglas county and have no problem with reception with the NWS office in Pleasant Hill, MO.

Linda Aikins 9 years, 9 months ago

Tribune is having a tornado, and they are just in a storm watch! This could be a long day!! Someone warn Cousin Eddie - Coolidge is nearby.I'll check Stafford too.

road_Runner 9 years, 9 months ago

"Boston_Corbett (Anonymous) says: My dog is a meteorologist. I always duct tape him to a tree trunk facing SW. He doesn't bark until the hailstones exceed one inch in size."Use a Mizzurah Tiger instead...It's much more fun that way. =]

westernksgirl 9 years, 9 months ago

P.S. Py - - that post made me giggle. Suppose I'll have to use up some back up batteries to play some Slayer music. "Hippies hate Slayer" - -Southpark

Linda Aikins 9 years, 9 months ago

I like the too. He is as TOB describes - very factful, no drama. Just the facts, man.They are popping out all over now. I don't believe they will get this far east.

Danielle Brunin 9 years, 9 months ago

TOB,That's exactly what I was thinking. I haven't seen a high-risk area that large before, even during the May 3-8, 2003 storms. Usually it is a fairly small bulls-eyed area. I don't usually get too concerned about severe weather, but I have to admit, I'm a little nervous about this one.

road_Runner 9 years, 9 months ago

I agree, mom_of_three. Dave Freeman rocks! He is always very composed and focused.

Danielle Brunin 9 years, 9 months ago

I agree with confrontation. is very good. I was also impressed with KANU 91.5 when we had the big storm at the beginning of May.

Boston_Corbett 9 years, 9 months ago

US 156 is getting nailed pretty much non-stop from Great Bend to I-70. Tornado warnings in Ellsworth, Lincoln, Saline. Also a nasty storm south of Gove, and one about to hit Oberlin. www.kwch.comThese pups are moving 40-60 mph.

mom_of_three 9 years, 9 months ago

p> is Dave Freeman. He is great! Why do the people in KC get so excited? KMBC does good in KC, and like someone in topeka.

Boston_Corbett 9 years, 9 months ago

I was watching 27 for a bit. Someone needs to tell those weather cowboys that when section lines appear on their maps, that they really are one mile apart. I just saw one dude try to identify a location of someone calling in 4 mile NNE of Marysville, and he drew a 15 mile by 15 mile circle that did not even include the stated location.I think the tie-dye kiddies are going to get a good wind storm and soaking tonight, but it at least it should blow through relatively quickly.

stargazer 9 years, 9 months ago

Thanks rodientgirl and TOB. The paper I got with my weather radio says NOAA does a test every wednesday from 10 am -12pm. This is not the same as the city siren test. We know those are worthless. LOL, I hope it does go off tonight so I know that I have it set up right. Don't want the bad weather tho. :-D

road_Runner 9 years, 9 months ago

I-29 is closed now north of St. Joseph, primarily between Mound City and Rock Port. Several tornadoes apparently touched down there and they are still are working on extracating people from vehicles. I know it might be a long-shot after reading that, but I hope noone was seriously injured

road_Runner 9 years, 9 months ago

Just by glancing at the maps this morning, if I were chasing today, I would start off east of Salina and go from there depending on where the dryline sets up. Since the movement of the storms are going to be from SW to NE at an insane 50mph, I would just sit in one spot and let the storms come to me. It'll be interesting to see how long the cap holds in central Kansas since it's going to be quite strong. There also will be a large amount of forcing in the atmosphere today which will play a heavy factor on the storm mode (supercellular vs linear), especially later on in the day. Either way, it's going to be a very active day in the weather department.

alm77 9 years, 9 months ago

rammy, that was mean. Okay, posters. Talk to me about weather radios. I haven't purchased one yet, but it's on my list of things to do today. What kind is there? What kind should I get? Is a cheap one just as good as a fancy one? What do I really need?

Jason Bowers-Chaika 9 years, 9 months ago

It looks like the fhit is going to hit the san tonight. I wonder what the Phelps' did to piss God off this time?

Boston_Corbett 9 years, 9 months ago

My dog is a meteorologist. I always duct tape him to a tree trunk facing SW. He doesn't bark until the hailstones exceed one inch in size.

ksdivakat 9 years, 9 months ago

God bless you rammy, I hope you and your family stay safe!

Boston_Corbett 9 years, 9 months ago

If you want to know what is going on with the tornados and storms out west this afternoon, I would recommend the streaming weather presentation from KWCH in

Danielle Brunin 9 years, 9 months ago

alm77,You can pick up a quality Midland Weather Radio at Walgreens for $30 (as of Saturday anyway). They also have them at RadioShack with more "special features," and of course, for more money (and really crappy customer service). Midland All-Hazards Weather Radios are usually considered the gold standard. However, other people may have good insight. Does anyone else have any recommendations?stargazer,Is the test on Wednesday? I thought it was on Mondays when they test the sirens, at least, it used to be. Also, make sure (depending on the type of weather radio that you have) that your alarm is set to tone, not voice, or message. That's the way they are on Midland weather radios.

westernksgirl 9 years, 9 months ago

They also have Midland radio's at Hy-Vee with the Topeka Station, Douglas County Preset is at 4 ..Learned that the hard way after being woke up at midnight for storms in Chase County (that I had to program County specific). Now, I need to learn to program the thing to only squawk when I need to head to the basement, and, not when there is possible creek flooding in the area . .Have a feeling the thing will be pretty active this evening.

bevy 9 years, 9 months ago

Thanks Goots, now I have the Hippie Hippie Shake running through my head. Py, I'm glad that I wasn't taking a drink of anything when I read your post. My daughter is gonna be PO'd. She just spent the last 3 days getting her basement bedroom dry! It only leaks when we get a LOT of rain over a long period.Keep your heads down tonight everyone!

bender 9 years, 9 months ago

I've been told that you want to look for weather radios that have SAME technology. I guess that allows you to select what counties and what types of alerts you want. The cheaper radios don't have this so you get everything. Or so I hear.

Linda Aikins 9 years, 9 months ago

Gosh I've missed you all. Py, let's do the Hippie Hippie Splat. Very funny!I've been gone a while and am blonde - I'm guessing road_runner is a storm chaser? MD, is my beloved Ashland OK? Where's my STUD???

Boston_Corbett 9 years, 9 months ago

Gootsie: There was a tornado warning earlier in Baca County Colorado that sides up to Morton and Stanton County Kansas

LittleMissFlea 9 years, 9 months ago

KANU is excellent, I listened to them all day the day of the microburst. They also have a fairly strong signal.

Moonbat 9 years, 9 months ago

I think we're in a full blown panic mode...there are no weather radios in this entire godforsaking town!And they're interrupting "Last Comic Standing"!!!

cloudbursting 9 years, 9 months ago

Thanks so much for the info! I have on now and will tune in to KANU later.

Boston_Corbett 9 years, 9 months ago

TOB, I noticed the storm in Kiowa earlier.

Confrontation 9 years, 9 months ago

WIBW is saying that some of the storms are moving at 72mph. Not much warning time for someone not paying much attention (or even those who are).

Godot 9 years, 9 months ago

MD, suggest you bring that little tykes table inside before it crashes through your window.

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