What is Chicago’s lowest high temp for the Memorial Day holiday? How often does it hit 90?

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Dear Tom,
I can remember some recent very cool Memorial Day events outdoors. What is Chicago’s lowest high temperature on the holiday? How often does it hit 90?
Nick Recchia River Grove
Dear Nick,
Even though Memorial Day marks the start of the summer outdoor recreation season, the variability of Chicago’s weather has generated a huge span in temperatures on the holiday. Citing records dating back to 1871, Chicago climatologist Frank Wachowski reported that the city has logged a sub-60-degree high on 21 Memorial Day holidays. The chilliest was 42 in 1889 and the most recent 51 in 1992. Wachowski pointed out that 16 of those 21 occurred before 1943, when the city’s official readings were taken close to the still-chilly Lake Michigan waters. Hot Memorial days are far fewer, with just 10 on the books- the hottest 95 recorded in 2012 and equaled last year.


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