National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce
Office Information
Photo of National Weather Service Office in Aberdeen, South Dakota
Our Mission:
The National Weather Service (NWS) provides weather, hydrologic, and climate forecasts and warnings for the United States, its territories, adjacent waters and ocean areas, for the protection of life and property and the enhancement of the national economy. NWS data and products form a national information database and infrastructure which can be used by other governmental agencies, the private sector, the public, and the global community.

It is accomplished by providing warnings and forecast of hazardous weather, including thunderstorms, flooding, hurricanes, tornadoes, winter weather, tsunamis, and climate events. The NWS is the sole United States OFFICIAL voice for issuing warnings during life-threatening weather situations.

About Our Office:

OFFICE HISTORY: The United States Weather Bureau opened a weather office in the Aberdeen, South Dakota, Airport Terminal building in June 1964. The office provided full-time services, including surface and upper air observations, to the Aberdeen Airport and surrounding communities. Budget reductions in 1978 led to staff and operations cuts. In July 1978, the Weather Service Office (WSO) Aberdeen staff of eight people was reduced to four and services were provided on a limited duty basis.

WSO Aberdeen closed in September 1981 and the office was reopened a year later for 24-hour-a-day service during the week and limited duty on weekends. The station once again became a part-time, limited duty station in July 1986 with a staff of four people. WSO Aberdeen remained a limited duty station until the National Weather Service modernization of the 1990s. In February 1994, WSO Aberdeen resumed full-time, 24-hour operations in the Airport Terminal. The staff increased to 10 people to handle the increased responsibility.

In November 1994, the new modernized Weather Forecast Office building was completed on the east side of Aberdeen Regional Airport. WSO Aberdeen began operations in the new facility and as part of the agency’s nationwide modernization effort. In the fall of 1998, WSO Aberdeen became a full-fledged forecast office and was renamed Weather Forecast Office (WFO) Aberdeen South Dakota. The staff totals 23 individuals: nine operational meteorologists, four hydrometeorological technicians or interns, a three member electronics staff, a facilities technician, an information technology officer, an administrative support assistant, a science officer, a warning coordination meteorologist, a data collection program manager, and a meteorologist-in-charge. The new County Warning and Forecast Area covers 26 counties in South Dakota and two counties in west-central Minnesota with a population about 160,000 people.

WFO Aberdeen produces weather warnings and advisories, daily forecasts, and digital or gridded forecasts for use by emergency managers, law enforcement, fire departments, land managers, aviation, media, and the public. The WFO staff also takes twice-daily upper air observations and collects surface and remotely-sensed weather data. All of these data streams are provided to the public via the
WFO Aberdeen web page (, and to the National Centers for Environmental Prediction for use in the national meteorological forecast models.


COMMUNITY DESCRIPTION: In its earliest years, Aberdeen was nicknamed the “Hub City” because it served as an important intersection for many busy railroad lines.  The city’s name honors Aberdeen, Scotland, hometown of a railroad president who helped settle the community.  Today’s “Hub City” has grown into a diverse, regional trade center with service and manufacturing industries, attractive retail shopping, superb convention and recreational facilities, excellent schools, a private college, a state university and a large medical center.


Situated in the fertile James River Valley, Aberdeen continues to call agriculture one of its backbone industries, but new business and developments in telecommunications, healthcare, banking, construction and retail merchandising reveal the ongoing evolution of South Dakota’s third largest community.  Residents can still hear the sound of train whistles, but the products grown and produced here are just as likely to move by truck as rail.  And the orders for these goods might arrive via one of the most ambitious telecommunications systems in the nation.  Aberdeen continues to serve as the hub for 80,000 people in Northeastern South Dakota and Southwestern North Dakota, and its sophisticated telecommunications network and friendly, honest, hard working residents are key contributors that help maintain the city as an important crossroads for commerce, culture, government and healthcare.


About 25,000 people proudly call Aberdeen their home.  Tree-lined streets and comfortable, quiet neighborhoods characterize the community’s residential areas.  The cost of housing in Aberdeen is considerably lower than national averages, and expertly crafted homes in all price ranges are available.  If you prefer living in the country, numerous options surround the city, including elegant residential settings on a championship golf course, conveniently situated hobby farms, and appealing homes and sites on two nearby lakes.


Aberdeen is a city of families and neighborhood schools, parks, and walking trails.  It is a hometown that hasn’t lost its warm, welcoming appeal.  Aberdeen’s residents may have come here for employment opportunities, or they may have retired here from a farm in the nearby countryside or from a small town in the regional trade area.  They might be in Aberdeen to pursue higher education, or to start a business.  Maybe they have settled or stayed in Aberdeen because they prefer living in a community that’s practically crime-free and offers  a civilized pace, four invigorating seasons, an abundance of recreational and cultural opportunities, and a handsome blue sky full of clean air.  Aberdonians appreciate their hometown for what it really is: a small progressive city offering Midwestern hospitality.


Aberdeen’s workforce is well trained, motivated to work hard, and is highly productive.  It is a community where entrepreneurs can prosper and solid values survive.


POPULATION AND DEMOGRAPHICS: Aberdeen has maintained population levels due to movement from the rural areas into Aberdeen for employment and services; therefore there is a constantly expanding labor supply for business and consumers of goods and services.


CLIMATE: Aberdeen’s climate, with its four distinct seasons, allows for a pleasant variety and an invigorating lifestyle.  A broad range of both summer and winter outdoor recreational choices can be enjoyed by people of all ages.


Average monthly temperature:

January         Average Maximum 21F      Average Minimum 0F

July              Average Maximum 85F      Average Minimum 60F


Average annual rainfall:    20”


Average annual snowfall:   38”


Elevation: 1300 feet msl


RECREATION:  A number of athletic facilities available at the city’s parks include baseball and softball fields, swimming pools, volleyball and horseshoe courts, basketball courts, jogging and bicycling  trails, outdoor tennis courts,  an indoor tennis club, three golf courses, bowling, ski team, swim team, etc.  Special attractions include Wylie Park with a small zoo, Storybook Land, and an outdoor aquatic center.  Other nearby lakes provides ample water recreational opportunities including fishing, water skiing, sailing, camping, and swimming.  Pheasant and waterfowl hunting is world renowned, along with a large whitetail deer population.  West of the Missouri River one can find mule deer, elk, and antelope.  Success rate is high making small and big game hunting a prime pastime for many of the states residents.


EDUCATIONAL FACILITIES:  Aberdeen has both public and private school systems.  Hub Area Vocational School provides technical training and Aberdeen is the home of the South Dakota School for the Visually Handicapped.  Northern State University offers degrees at the masters, baccalaureate, and associate levels in business, education, and most of the liberal arts programs.  Presentation College, operated by the Catholic Presentation Sisters, is noted for high quality preparation in the health fields as well as business, education, social services, and computer science.


TRANSPORTATION:  There is a taxi system available in Aberdeen, but no public bus system.  Aberdeen Regional Airport offers flights from Delta Airlines.


TAXES:  The state of South Dakota doesn’t have a personal property tax or a state income tax.




Avera St. Lukes Hospital

3M Company

Hub City, Inc.

Kessler’s Inc.

Midstates Printing, Inc.

Twin City Fan and Blower

Verifications Inc.

Wal-Mart Super Center

Wells Fargo Bank

Wyndham Hotel Group


Our Forecast Area