2014 Spotter Training

Spotter training sessions for 2014 are being scheduled.  Please check the schedule frequently for updates and to find a spotter training class near you.  In 2014, we are planning on holding 33 in-person spotter training classes and one advanced class.  In addition, we are planning on conducting three spotter training webinars.  

The National Weather Service (NWS) and emergency managers host spotter training classes across central Iowa every spring.  There are a combination of "in-person" spotter training classes scattered across central Iowa and webinar-based distance learning classes.  In-person spotter training classes are offered in larger cities and towns and in several rural counties and small towns.  Every county in the NWS, Des Moines, County Warning Area (CWA) will likely have an "in-person" spotter training class at least every other year.  To supplement "in-person" training, the NWS also conducts webinars using Join-Me internet-based distance learning webinars.  The  webinars are open to all spotters.

One "advanced" spotter class is offered and built on what was taught in the regular class. It is intended for those who wish to do mobile spotting and desire a deeper understanding of meso-scale and storm scale meteorology as it relates to storm spotting.  Spotters interested in attending this class should have attended a regular spotter class either 'in-person" or webinar based.

2014 Course Notes and Spotter Registration Information

In-Person Spotter Presentation Details

Multi-media presentation containing information about severe weather climatology in Iowa, how to identify severe weather in the field, thunderstorm types and threats, how to report severe weather, severe weather spotter networks, safety and more
90 to 120 minutes in length, open to the public and free of charge
Instructors are NWS Meteorologists
Hosted by Emergency Managers and a few amateur radio clubs

Webinar Spotter Presentation Details - It's Simple to View a Webinar!

Multi-media presentation containing information about severe weather climatology in Iowa, how to identify severe weather in the field, thunderstorm types and threats, how to report severe weather, severe weather spotter networks, safety and more - Same presentation as the "in-person" presentation!
Length will the nearly the same as the in-person presentation.  Webinars are open to the spotters and they are free of charge - First 250 spotters who go to the Join-Me web link provided will be allowed on the webinar! 
Instructors are NWS meteorologists - Real-time questions are allowed!

Webinar Details:  PC with at least 1.5 mb/sec download speed, Adobe Flash installed, and a phone (land-line or cell phone) are REQUIRED

  • Turn internet browser to:  https://join.me/nws-desmoines just prior to the start of the webinar
  • Call the conference call number at 1-866-231-8384, Conference ID 5152702614
  • iPhone/iPad and Android phone Join.Me applications can be downloaded at https://join.me.  Smartphone user access is: nws-desmoines
  • NWS instructor will provide additional instructions at the start of the presentation


Map of 2014 NWS Des Moines Spotter Training Locations

Map in KML Format



February, 2014 - Completed
Day City, State Time Location
25 Des Moines, IA
(Polk County)
7:00pm CST Amateur Radio Talk - Public Welcome! Plymouth Church, 4126 Ingersoll Ave

March, 2014 - Completed
Day City, State Time Location
04 Grafton, IA
(Worth County)
7:00pm CST Grafton Community Center 202 6th Ave, Grafton, IA 50440
05 Bloomfield, IA
(Davis/Appanoose County)
6:00pm CST Bloomfield Fire Department 501 S West St Bloomfield, IA
06 Webinar , IA
(Central Iowa County)
7:00pm CST Join.Me Webinar - All counties! See instructions above
06 Ames, IA
(Story County)
7:00pm CST Mary Greeley Medical Center South Auditorium Amateur radio group - Public Welcome!
10 Stratford, IA
(Hamilton County)
7:00pm CDT Stratford Fire Department 630 Highway 175 Stratford, Iowa
11 Ottumwa, IA
(Wapello County)
6:00pm CDT Indian Hills Community College, Room 108 in the Rural Health Education building
11 Hampton, IA
(Franklin County)
7:00pm CDT Franklin County Law enforcement center 105 5th Street SW
12 Winterset, IA
(Madison County)
6:30pm CDT Elderly Meal Site 1006 John Wayne Dr, Winterset, IA 50273
12 Story City, IA
(Story County)
6:30pm CDT Story City Fire Department 512 Park, Story City, IA
13 Oskaloosa, IA
(Mahaska County)
7:00pm CDT ISU Extension Office 212 N I street Oskaloosa, Iowa 52577
17 Corning, IA
(Adams County)
6:30pm CDT Corning Community Center/City Hall - 601 6th St. Corning, IA (3 blocks west of the Casey's gas station on Highway 148)
17 Denison, IA
(Crawford County)
6:30pm CDT Fire Station in Denison
18 Albia, IA
(Monroe/Lucas County)
6:00pm CDT Albia Fire Station 115 2nd Ave W Albia, IA
18 Toledo, IA
(Tama County)
6:30pm CDT Otter Creek Nature Center - 2283 Park Road, Toledo, IA 52342
19 Mount Ayr, IA
(Ringgold County)
7:00pm CDT Courthouse in Mount Ayr 109 W. Madison
19 Menlo, IA
(Adair/Guthrie County)
7:00pm CDT Community Center at the corner of Sherman St and 5th St
20 Mason City, IA
(Cerro Gordo County)
6:00pm CDT Mason City Police Department, 78 S. Georgia Avenue
20 Fort Dodge, IA
(Webster County)
7:00pm CDT Iowa Central Community College Fort Dodge - BHS Auditorium
24 Waterloo, IA
(Black Hawk County)
6:30pm CDT Hawkeye Community College in Tama Hall
24 Indianola, IA
(Warren County)
7:00pm CDT Simpson College at Carver Science Building in Jordan Lecture Hall
24 Webinar , IA
(Central Iowa County)
7:00pm CDT Join.Me Webinar - All counties! See instructions above
25 Greene, IA
(Butler/Bremer County)
6:30pm CDT Community Center in Greene
25 Des Moines, IA
(Polk County)
7:00pm CDT Polk County EOC/Emergency Management Agency - 1907 Carpenter Ave, Des Moines, IA 50314
26 Minburn, IA
(Dallas County)
6:00pm CDT Washington Township School - , Minburn, IA
26 Estherville, IA
(Emmet/Palo Alto County)
7:00pm CDT Iowa Lakes Community College
27 Belmond, IA
(Wright County)
6:30pm CDT Belmond Fire Station
31 Humboldt , IA
(Humboldt County)
6:00pm CDT Humboldt Oxbow 7 Park Road, Humboldt Ia
31 Pocahontas, IA
(Pocahontas County)
6:30pm CDT Courthouse Assembly Room 99 Courthouse Sq Pocahontas IA 50574

April, 2014 - Completed
Day City, State Time Location
01 Marshalltown, IA
(Marshall County)
6:30pm CDT DeJardin Hall, Iowa Valley Continuing Education 3702 s. Center St. Registration suggested - Marla Williams 641-752-4643
02 Jefferson, IA
(Greene County)
7:00pm CDT Jefferson Fire Department, City Hall, 220 North Chestnut, Jefferson
02 Audubon, IA
(Audubon County)
7:00pm CDT Audubon County Courthouse
03 Forest City, IA
(Hancock/Winnebago County)
6:30pm CDT Titonka Savings Bank Community Room 101 Highway 69 North Forest City
07 Newton, IA
(Jasper County)
6:30pm CDT Jasper County Community Center located at 2401 1st Ave E, Newton
09 Webinar , IA
(Central Iowa County)
7:00pm CDT Join.Me Webinar - All counties! See instructions above
15 Osceola, IA
(Clarke County)
7:00pm CDT High School Auditorium at 800 N Jackson St, Osceola, IA 50213
16 Madrid, IA
(Boone County)
7:00pm CDT Advanced Spotter Training Iowa Arboretum, 1875 Peach Avenue, Madrid, IA 50156
There are currently no outreach events scheduled.

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