Wichita Time And Temperature Phone Number Celebrates Birthday

By: Jordan Shefte Email
By: Jordan Shefte Email

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One of Wichita's oldest weather icons is celebrating a birthday.

The Wichita Time and Temperature phone number is celebrating its' 60th birthday, servicing the community since 1952.

Arrow Wrecker Service specializes in towing and roadside assistance and they're known for their replica Mater truck sitting outside the business. But they're also behind this famous phone number. Call 686-6621, and you'll hear something like, "The time is 11:30, current temperature is seventy three degrees."

Even in the age of smart phones and the internet, people are still dialing in.

"We get somewhere upwards of a thousand to two thousand calls a day," said Arrow Wrecker Service President Diane Richardson.

During daylight savings time, that number can double, even triple.

"I can only assume it's easiest for them to just pick up that phone and call because that number has been in their head since they were a child," Richardson said.

Richardson purchased the phone number and computer that went with it in 1984. She saw it as an economical way to advertise.

Over the sixty years, the phone number has had some assistance in aging gracefully. Arrow has had to add three more lines over the years to accomodate the high number of calls. Also, updates have been made to the operating system.

"It's all computerized," Richardson said. "A weather phone company out of Atlanta, Georgia monitors it 24/7."

But even with these changes, the line is still providing the same services it did sixty years ago. Richardson says that if the time or temp gets off by just a little bit, they receive calls asking to reset it.

Once again, the Wichita Time and Temperature phone number is 316-686-6621.


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