On Saturday, February 23rd, NWS Louisville meteorologist Linda Gilbert was invited to speak at Middle Tennessee's Severe Weather Awareness Day. With over 300 folks in attendance, the event was a huge success with compliments pouring in by the end of the day. Booths were set up for attendees to stop at between presentations on the main stage as well as in classrooms. These booths included local TV meteorologists, the local chapter from the American Red Cross, the University of Alabama at Huntsville (UAH), students from Western Kentucky University (WKU), Metro Nashville's Office of Emergency Management, the Nashville Severe Weather group (@NashSevereWx on Twitter), and other disaster preparedness groups. One of Nashville's news stations had organized a chance for people to see themselves simulated in front of a weather map on television, free weather radios were given out, and cool weather related demonstrations were provided. Just outside of the convention center were various weather and emergency vehicles available for browsing, including a storm chasing vehicle and a weather radar on wheels.
Up on the main stage, both the Basic and Advanced SKYWARN Spotter Courses were given by NWS Nashville's Warning Coordination Meteorologist (pictured below). Additionally, presentations were given on the January 30th, 2013 Tornadoes as well as the 15th Anniversary of the April 16th, 1998 Nashville Tornado. While the April 16th, 1998 tornado talk was broken up among several presenters, one of NWS Louisville's Social Media Spotter Liaison volunteers, Emily Yates, spoke about some of the meteorology behind the severe weather that broke out that day. In the breakout classrooms, various other presentations went on during part of the afternoon, such as Nocturnal Tornadoes in Tennessee and Kentucky by Ashlan Clark of WKU, tSpotter Recruiting (#tSpotter for Tennesseans, #LMKSpotter for Kentuckians and southern Hoosiers) by Will Minkoff, and a joint effort by Gilbert and NWS Nashville's Trevor Boucher on January 30th's Storm Survey Tactics. Gilbert's presentation was titled "What Goes Into a NWS Storm Survey? A Look at the 30 January 2013 Surveys" with a focus on a few of the surveys conducted in central Kentucky from a surveyor's perspective. The breakout classroom for the storm survey topic was filled to standing room only and proved to be successful with praises afterward. If you find yourself in the Nashville area next year, be sure to plan to attend!