HAMPTON ROADS, Va. (WAVY) — A lot of us dream of a white Christmas, and 10 years ago today, we almost got it.

A major winter storm nailed the Eastern Seaboard on December 25-27 of 2010, dumping more than a foot of snow on most of the region. The snow began late Christmas night and lasted well into the day on Sunday, December 26.

How does that not qualify as a white Christmas? Well, according to NOAA (and many other weather organizations around the world), a “white Christmas” is officially defined as having an inch or more of snow on the ground on Christmas morning. Yes, it’s a technicality. But you could say we got close.

The blizzard scored several records as it made its way up the coast. Parts of New Jersey got more than 30 inches of snow. New York City’s Central Park measured 20 inches of snow. Even Atlanta got a couple inches of snow. And the pressure inside the storm intensified to the equivalent of a Category 3 hurricane for a time. 

Unlike many systems we see of its type, the coastal areas got more snow, while further inland, snow totals were smaller. It also helped to give Norfolk its second-highest monthly December total for snow on record. 

So even though we haven’t seen a whole lot of snow here (or any in some places) in Hampton Roads over the past couple of winters, we know it can happen, and we know it can happen big. Just like we never expect a tornado warning on Christmas Eve, it’s always a good reminder to be ready for any kind of weather.