Good morning, readers, here is today’s morning update:
Today: Sunny, with a high near 38. North wind 5 to 10 mph.
Tonight: Clear, with a low around 20. North wind around 5 mph becoming calm.
Christmas day: Sunny, with a high near 45. Calm wind becoming southeast around 5 mph.
Christmas night: Mostly clear, with a low around 28.
For Wednesday: Check out our Christmas Day paper (Life section) for ways to use your leftovers, a column by Loretta Gillespie.
Here is a look at businesses closings schedules for the Christmas holiday:
• Cullman Caring For Kids (closed through Jan. 5)
• Cullman City Hall (closed Dec. 24-25)
• Cullman County Commission On Aging and senior centers (closed until Jan. 2)
• Cullman County Courthouse (all closed Dec. 24-25; Revenue Commissioner is also closed on Dec. 23)
• Cullman County Health Dept. (closed Dec. 24-25)
• Cullman County Landfill (closed Dec. 24-25)
• Cullman County Public Library (closed Dec. 24-25)
• Dept. of Human Resources (closed Dec. 24-25)
• Post Office
• The Cullman Times
• County sanitation will run a day behind beginning Dec. 26; and city garbage will pick up Wednesday’s with Thursday’s
Did you know?
These are some other names for Santa Claus from around the world:
• Sinterklaas (Dutch)
• Kris Kringle from Christkindl (German)
• Father Christmas (Great Britain)
• Ded Moroz (Granfather Frost in Russian)
• Télapo (Winter Father in Hungarian)
• Baba Christmas (Urdu)
• Babbo Natale (Italy)
• Bellsnickle (old American)
• Black Peter (Morocco)
• Christkindl (Austria)
• Grandfather Frost or Ded Moroz (Russia)
• Gwiazdor, meaning "star man" from the North Star (Poland)
• Joulupukki (Finland)
• Kanakaloka (Hawaii)
• Kerstman (Norway)
• Mos Craciun (Romania)
• Pere Noel (France)
• Papai Noel (Brazil, Portugal & Peru)
• Sion Corn, or Chimney John (Wales)
• Shengdan Laoren (China)
While many will be enjoying winter with snow, we down south are still dreaming of a white Christmas. Here are a few fun facts about snow, in lieu of the real thing:
1. An average snowflake is made up of 180 billion molecules of water.
2. Around 12 percent of the Earth’s land surface is covered in permanent snow and ice.
3. Each year an average of 105 snow-producing storms affect the continental United States. A typical storm will have a snow-producing lifetime of two to five days and will bring snow to portions of several states.
4. All snowflakes have six sides.
5. Rochester, New York is the snowiest large city in the U.S., averaging 94 inches of snow a year.
6. Chionophobia is a fear of snow. I can spell that one, not pronounce it!
7. Snow is actually colorless. What little sunlight is absorbed by snow is absorbed uniformly over the wavelengths of visible light thus giving snow its white appearance. If not for that, snow would be clear — and very dangerous! If you can’t see it....
8. People buy more cakes, cookies and candies than any other food when a blizzard is in the forecast. Here in Cullman, they empty the shelves of bread, milk and charcoal.
9. A blizzard occurs when you can’t see for 1/4 mile. The winds are always 35 miles an hour or more. The storm must last at least 3 hours to be classed as a blizzard. If any of these conditions are less, it is only a snowstorm.
10. The average snowflake falls at a speed of 3.1 miles per hour. Wonder who clocked that one?!
A special “very happy holiday” goes to all those who work hard to make it so for others!
To all our Cullman Times readers, happy holiday!