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National Weather Service cancels all Spotter Training Classes


UPDATE: Due to concerns over the Coronoavirus, all NWS classes in Western Wisconsin have been canceled.

NWS La Crosse has online classes on March 19 at 10 a.m. and April 21 at 7 p.m. and plan on adding at least two more online sessions.

These severe weather Skywarn spotter training classes, which teach what to look for in clouds to determine what type of severe weather is coming and which direction it's traveling.

Classes typically last a couple of hours and are free.

Stormtracker 18 Meteorologists say this is a great class for not only anyone looking to become a trained weather spotter, but also for anyone who is scared of severe weather and thunderstorms as this class can give you a better understanding of how they work and where to stay up to date with warnings.

The full list of classes currently scheduled are:

Mar. 4- Whitehall at 6:30 p.m. at the Fire Department

CANCELED- Mar. 12- TWO classes in Barron at both 2 p.m. and 6 p.m. at the Courthouse Auditorium

CANCELED- Mar. 26- Township of Wilson at 6:30 p.m. at the Town Hall in Winona County, MN

CANCELED- Mar. 31- Altoona at 3 p.m. at the Fire Department

CANCELED- Mar. 31- Mondovi at 6:30 p.m. at the Roger Martin Community Center

CANCELED- Mar. 31- Eau Claire at 7 p.m. at CVTC Energy Education Center's Commons Room

CANCELED- Apr. 1- Sheldon (Rusk County) at 6 p.m. at the Community Center

CANCELED- Apr. 2- Ladysmith at 6 p.m. at the Fire Hall

CANCELED- Apr. 15- Fort McCoy at 6:30 p.m. at the Whitetail Ridge Ski Chalet

CANCELED- Apr. 20- Loyal at 6:30 p.m. at the Fire Department

CANCELED- Apr. 21- Augusta at 6:30 p.m. at Augusta Memorial Public Library.

Online classes may require pre-registration. Click here for NWS Twin Cities' info, and here for NWS La Crosse.

Matt Schaefer

Matt Schaefer was promoted to Chief Meteorologist in July of 2019 and has been our evening meteorologist for News 18 since June of 2016. Prior to that, he was our Saturday meteorologist starting in September 2014.

Matt was born and raised in Sheboygan, Wisconsin. He enjoys all the extremes that mother nature throws at the Badger State: from severe thunderstorms to blizzards to subzero temperatures.

Matt studied meteorology in the Midwest as well, earning his Bachelor’s of Science in Meteorology at Valparaiso University in Indiana. There, Matt was heavily involved in VUTV Weather, the Valpo student chapter of AMS/NWA, and VUSIT (Valparaiso University Storm Intercept Team). He’s logged more than 20,000 miles chasing and studying severe storms all across the country and witnessed nine tornadoes including six in one day!

Matt describes himself as a Wisconsin boy at heart and enjoys cheering for the Packers, Brewers, Badgers, and Admirals just to name a few. He loves simply being outdoors and enjoys the Wisconsin wilderness especially in fall, and whitetail deer season!

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