Lafayette, LA (KPEL News) - So many articles have been written over the last week about the below-freezing temperatures we could see the week of January 15 in Lafayette and south Louisiana.

The hullabaloo actually began in October and November after writers peeked at the Farmer's Almanac which predicts an unusually cold, wet winter for Louisiana.

That chatter has continued with articles about dripping pipes, bursting pipes, and whether will we see any "winter precipitation." 

In Acadiana, we have dealt with some extreme weather over the decades. We joke about wearing shorts one day and having to bundle up for an Arctic blast the next. The joke is funny because it's true.

The possibility of snow makes some of us giddy, and actual flakes falling from the sky have us screaming with delight like 4-year-olds.

A hard freeze with any sort of wet conditions brings us all to a grinding halt, sometimes literally. Some of you may remember a few years ago when it snowed and froze and some of us (like me!) couldn't get out of our driveways because of the layer of ice.

Our neighbors to the north laugh at our inability to handle temperatures below freezing the same way we snark at them for bemoaning what they call excessive heat. A south Louisiana person knows that the term "the three Ps" means it's gonna be really, really cold. Gumbo pots start boiling.

 Meteorologists tell us that winter weather is difficult to predict, but KATC Chief Meteorologist Rob Perillo assures folks that, although the temperatures will be below freezing a couple of nights, we shouldn't expect any snow or freezing rain.

Here's the forecast, as of Wednesday, January 10, 2024

Courtesy KATC TV 3

Believe it or not, the majority of people in local broadcasting take the responsibility for informing the public about topics that may threaten their life or treasures very seriously. Whether it's a hurricane, man-made situation, global pandemic, or freezing conditions that people aren't accustomed to, the focus is safety and protection through accurate information.

Humor and authenticity make those messages easier to receive and, most times, to deliver.

Retired newscaster Hoyt Harris was a master at delivery during his time on the desk. Behind the scenes, he was just as jovial.

In 2011, he shared the old KATC desk with Marcelle Fontenot. Rob was the evening meteorologist and "Hey, Hey Everybody" Hugh Keeton handled sports.

As the gang was wrapping up the newscast on a very cold night in February, Hoyt and Rob were apparently advising viewers what they should expect and how to stay safe and warm.

Hoyt, always one to bring a bit of eloquent levity to a situation, encouraged viewers to do all of those things, but he added his own twist to the messaging.

And it was gold.

Stay warm, protect the three Ps, but don't worry about snow, sleet, or freezing rain.

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Gallery Credit: Mary K

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