(WGHP) – Since 1928, Piedmont Triad International Airport has been collecting weather data that allows us to know what the weather has been like over a period of time. When weather is looked at over a period of time, we know that as climate. 

With Thanksgiving Day just days away, let’s take a look back at Thanksgiving Day climatology and see how this year’s Thanksgiving Day forecast will compare.

Thanksgiving Weather Extremes 


Since record-keeping began in 1928, PTI has observed a high temperature in the 70s only six times on Thanksgiving Day. Those years include 1933, 1966, 1968, 1979, 1985 and 2007. In 1979, Piedmont Triad International Airport recorded the warmest Thanksgiving Day temperature with a high of 74 degrees. 

The last time we had a Thanksgiving Day in the 70s was in 2007 with a high temperature of 73 degrees.  


The coldest afternoon temperature we’ve seen in the Triad occurred in 1930 with a high temperature of 33 degrees. A high temperature in the 30s has only occurred twice during the period of record at PTI airport; the only other time was Thanksgiving 1989 with a high of 39 degrees. 


We’ve certainly had rain on Thanksgiving Day before, but the most rain we’ve recorded on Thanksgiving Day happened in 1983. A total of 1.58 inches of rain fell, which is also the only Thanksgiving Day that observed more than an inch of rainfall. In the last 10 years, we’ve recorded a trace or more of rainfall four times on Thanksgiving. 


On record, PTI has never observed measurable snowfall on Thanksgiving Day. However, we’ve observed a trace of snow at the airport four times since 1928. The most recent year was Thanksgiving Day in 1980. 

What was the weather like for the last five Thanksgiving? 

If we take a look back at the most recent Thanksgiving Days in the Triad, three of the last five had afternoon temperatures in the 60s with two in the 50s. 

The warmest we’ve been in the last five years was 63 degrees both in 2022 and 2020. 

The coldest we’ve seen temperatures get on Thanksgiving Day was in 2021 with a morning low of 30 degrees. 

While we observed a trace of rainfall on Thanksgiving Day in 2021, the last time we had measurable rainfall was in 2020 when 0.29 inches fell at PTI airport. 

An average Thanksgiving Day would have a high temperature of 57 degrees and a low temperature of 35 degrees, based on past Thanksgiving Days.   

The average rainfall amount is 0.09 if we look at each Thanksgiving since 1928. 

How is our Thanksgiving Day weather looking this year? 

Thanksgiving, this year, falls on Nov. 23, and the normal high temperature for that date is 58 and the normal low is 37 degrees. A normal amount of rainfall for November 23 is 0.11 inches. 

In the days leading up to Thanksgiving 2023, it looks like North Carolina will see a cold front that could FINALLY bring some rainfall to the region. 

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The cold front also looks like it could bring a decent temperature drop leading into the holiday. 

As of one week out, Thanksgiving Day 2023 is forecast to have a high temperature of 51 and a low temperature of 33. Since we’ll be behind the cold front, skies are forecast to be mostly sunny.  

While rain is in the forecast in the days leading up to the holiday, we are not expecting rain on Thanksgiving Day.