We are not usually limited to dreaming of a white Christmas in our region because we usually get a real one. However, we do not always have snow on the ground on Christmas. In fact, we should expect a Christmas to pass without any snow on the ground every few years or so.

Looking back over the years, the likelihood of there being at least one inch of snow on the ground in Fargo-Moorhead on Christmas morning has been 84%, leaving about 16% of Christmas Days with little or no snow. That is about once every seven years, on average.

When a brown Christmas comes along, it seems unusual. However, the statistics suggest that this is something we should expect to happen every few years. In fact, the frequency of brown Christmas Days has been subtly increasing in recent decades. This year, like any other, there will likely be snow for Christmas, but we are not assured of it.

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