7.7 Weather Kids

Friday, 23 June 2017: 3:00 PM
Salon III (InterContinental Kansas City at the Plaza)
Van Denton, WGHP TV, Greensboro/HP/Winston-Salem, NC

This programs serves the community and inspires young people that wish to become meteorologist. I began this program in 1997 and shared a presentation on it at the AMS Conference in Orlando, Florida in 1999. Shortly after that presentation, several TV stations around the country began a similar segment. Since that time, the program has been nominated for multiple Emmy Awards and several past Weather Kids became meteorologist. It is not limited to prospective meteorologist as any child is welcome to apply. They are all encouraged to share their dreams and in some cases talents. I think it helps other children to see that you are never too young to dream.

For anyone in the business looking for a way to connect with the audience, this program does that. At least once a week I run into former weather kids in restaurants, shopping centers even football games. I have even had a former weather kid's child become a weather kid, 2nd generation. It creates a bond with viewers unlike anything I have seen before. I have 30 year old people send me Emails or Facebook posts and along with their comment or question, they are sure to let me know they were a Van's Weather kid and provide their year.

I started this program in 1997 and it ran weekly until 2014 and then brought it back in 2016. It went away for 2 years due to our adding another 90 minutes of news between 4 and 7pm without adding a weather person. Now that we have another weather perrson, I was able to bring it back last year. We now require the child to be between 8 and 13 years of age. The first 17 years the ages were 6 to 12, but some had trouble reading. I train the kids and they do a portion of the weather by themselves as I stand a few feet off the screen.

Here is a link to the page where we post past weather kids.

One of the weather kids that I had on back in January was so unique he was invited to appear on Fox and Friends in New York City. A big deal for the young man and his mom.

The link below gives a little insight into what the program did for this young man.


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