Lake effect snow, freezing rain, and cold air top the list of Michigan weather events on this day in history. From the National Weather Service archives here are the events that happened on Dec 24.
This was a very cold day across Southeast Michigan in 1983. Detroit only had a high temperature of 3 degrees, and the low was minus 9 degrees. Flint and Saginaw were not much warmer with respective highs of 6 degrees and 7 degrees, and lows of minus 5 degrees and minus 3 degrees. December 1983 was the fifth coldest December for Detroit and Flint, and it was the third coldest December for Saginaw. Other record cold high temperatures for the day include Grand Rapids 7 degrees, Muskegon 6 degrees, Alpena 9 degrees, Houghton Lake 8 degrees, and Sault Ste. Marie 1 degree.
In 1993, a Christmas Eve snowstorm drops from 3 to 8 inches of snow across Lower Michigan and ushers in several weeks of severe winter weather. Grand Rapids picks up a record 7.5 inchs of snow. The Weather Forecast Office in Marquette had the first of seven straight days with lows below zero.
Arctic air moved across the Great Lakes to produce a prolonged period of lake effect snow across portions of eastern upper Michigan in 1999. During Dec. 23, lake effect snow began falling across far northeastern Chippewa County. The snow finally diminished by early morning on Dec. 24, with far northwestern Chippewa county receiving 16 to 18 inches of snow.
On Dec. 23 and Dec. 24, 2000, a low pressure system moved from Wisconsin to Lake Huron. Strong north winds generated more lake effect snow showers over Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. Most areas received some snow as the system passed by, but the heaviest amounts fell in the north-central part around Marquette. Negaunee reported 13 inches; Herman recorded 10 inches and 8.5 inches fell in Marquette with the majority of the snow falling on Dec. 24. Southeast winds ahead of this storm system produced a narrow band of heavy snow downwind of Lake Huron. This band was confined to areas around Drummond Island and De Tour Village in far eastern Upper Michigan. During the evening of Dec. 23, these locations received around 10 inches of snowfall.
In 2009, a low pressure system developing over the Plains brought periods of heavy snow, sleet and freezing rain to portions of western Upper Michigan from Christmas Eve into Christmas Day. The observer in Rockland measured 10 inches of wet snow in 15 hours. Snow was mixed with freezing rain toward the end of the event. Four inches of wet snow mixed with freezing rain fell in Marenisco. The observer in Houghton measured six inches of wet snow in four hours. A separate report from Chassel estimated six inches of snow in five hours.