Twister movie 10th Anniversary in Wakita, Oklahoma May 28, 2005

Stormchaser picnic

storm chase images and log by William T. Hark, M.D.

I started the day in Pratt, Kansas. I had two choices: I could try chasing in eastern Colorado or attend the annual storm chase picnic. This year, it would be held with the 10th anniversary party of the filming of Twister at the Twister Museum in Wakita, Oklahoma. The movie was filmed in 1995 and portions were filmed in Wakita and the surrounding area. Part of the town was destroyed and rebuilt for the movie. I hated to miss a chase but the chance of decent severe weather was very low. After reviewing more data, I decided to attend the party.

The museum had special exhibits of movie props and photos from the set. Outside, there was a country band, and demonstrations of blacksmithing and quilting. There was homemade barbecue and other picnic foods. About 30 to 40 chasers attended along with most of the town and the area state senator. I saw Dan Robinson, a chaser I know from West Virginia along with Jeff Piotrowsky, Shane Adams and Amos Magliocco. Like myself, everyone was slightly nervous about missing potential severe weather and were checking data or calling friends. After the party, I met Amos Magliocco, Tony Laubach and several other chasers out for dinner in Enid, Oklahoma. It was fun sharing stories of misery and frustration after almost two weeks of terrible prospects. I returned to Oklahoma City to position myself for an area chase on Sunday. My exact target wouldn't be be clear until Sunday morning. I later looked at the radar and wasn't impressed. I am glad I stayed in the area and attended the party rather than chase mush in Colorado.

Video sent to TWC. Not used

On May 28, I reviewed more weather data. There was no chance of severe weather in the area and I had to be back home on the 29th. My chase vacation was over. More severe weather was expected in a few days including possible tornado outbreaks in early June but I had return home. There's always next year.

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(V -- Video Still. P -- Scanned from slide, Fuji Velvia 100)

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