Theres plenty in Southwest Michigans weather record to explain why those who track storms or take daily precipitation measurements start staying a little extra-alert to whats going on once the calendar flips to April. Were still several months out from the peak of tornado season in our part of the country. While reports of severe weather to our south and west will soon start to become more frequent our chances of being advised to take shelter wont peak until the months of July and August. But dont say that too confidently to the thousands in Kalamazoo who remember all too well May 13, 1980. And theyve got plenty of company with those who can recall events like the April 2, 1977 twisters in rural Kalamazoo and later in Eaton County. An F-5 tornado caused fatalities in Hudsonville and the northwest edge of Grand Rapids on April 3, 1956. Hillsdale and Jackson counties were in the crosshairs of a killer tornado in the April 4 th , 1973 super outbreak. Its a long, deadly list. Check your weather radio batteries. Late season snow, ice and arctic air and early season severe thunderstorms are all part of the Michigan weather record.