John Bolaris (born June 27, 1957) is an American meteorologist. Bolaris has won four Mid-Atlantic Emmy Awards—three for Best Weathercaster and one for Best Entertainment Host for Time Out, a television show he co-hosted for five years on WCAU in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
He worked as a syndicated meteorologist from 1982 to 1987. After a short time at News 12 Long Island, he worked at WCBS in New York from 1987 to 1990. While at WCAU in Philadelphia from 1990 to 2003, he gained notoriety for predicting a 2001 "Storm of the Century" that was much less severe than his predictions. He returned to WCBS from 2003 to 2007. From 2008 to 2011, he was chief meteorologist for WTXF-TV in Philadelphia.
Life and career
Bolaris is a 1975 graduate of Connetquot High School, He has an associate's degree in applied science from Suffolk County Community College and studied meteorology at the U.S. Air Force Weather Technical School.
Bolaris started his career in 1982 at Metro Weather Service where he worked as a syndicated meteorologist until 1987, when he joined News 12 Long Island. Later that year, he was hired by WCBS to be their weekend meteorologist and stayed there until 1990.
After leaving WCBS the first time Bolaris relocated to Philadelphia, where he went to work for then-CBS affiliate WCAU, where, in March 2001, he became infamous locally for predicting the "Storm of the Century," which ended up missing the Philadelphia area. During the week leading up to the storm, Bolaris urged viewers to stay home and make alternate arrangements for an impending Monday storm that was to dump snowfall similar to the Blizzard of 1996 that hit Philadelphia. The storm only resulted in about two inches of snow for the area. Bolaris told Philadelphia Magazine in 2007 that the incident still haunts him and played a role in his departure from WCAU to return to New York, but refused to accept full blame for his forecast because no one believed the path of the storm would change as drastically as it did. At the time of the blown forecast, Bolaris did accept full responsibility and apologized in a cover story in the Philadelphia Daily News. Bolaris was later phased out from WCAU and rejoined New York's WCBS Channel 2 for a second stint from 2002-2008. He would be replaced at channel 2 with Lonnie Quinn. He remained at the station until 2003. Bolaris then returned to WCBS as its chief meteorologist. Toward the end of his second time at the station Bolaris was taken off the nightly newscasts, working mornings and weekends until his departure. While at WCBS, he also occasionally filled in for Dave Price on CBS' The Early Show.
On November 1, 2007, it was announced that he would move back to Philadelphia to become the chief weatherman for WTXF on their 5 p.m and 10 p.m. newscasts. His first broadcast upon his return to Philadelphia was on January 8, 2008. On December 22, 2011, Bolaris was suspended indefinitely from WTXF. He was released from this contract on January 10, 2012.
On October 29, 2012, Bolaris was brought onto the Howard Stern Show to announce that he would be covering Hurricane Sandy, the storm dubbed "Frankenstorm" because of its size and how it was expected to affect millions of residents of the east coast of the United States due to its interaction with other weather patterns.
Credit card victim
In March 2010, Bolaris was the victim of a "Bar Girls" scam run by an international crime ring.
He was allegedly drugged and his American Express card was charged for $43,000. AMEX did not believe his story of being scammed and sent his account to collection. In April 2011, with the help of Bolaris' testimony, the FBI busted the crime ring and arrested 17 people. Bolaris's Miami Beach experience was the subject of an article in the January/February 2012 issue of Playboy magazine and he was quoted throughout the story. Shortly after the issue was released in early December 2011, Bolaris was suspended indefinitely by WTXF. It was reported that station management was unhappy with the way Bolaris came across in the article.
Although Bolaris expressed interest in returning, on January 11, 2012, a WTXF spokesperson confirmed to the Philadelphia Daily News that he and WTXF mutually agreed to part ways. Philly.com reported that on January 5, a WTXF employee emailed the Daily News asking to remove Bolaris’ photo from the Fox weather forecasts on Page 2 of the Daily News. Bolaris appeared as a guest on the December 12, 2012, episode of the television talk show Dr. Phil, titled Weatherman's Real Life Hangover.
- "WCBS-TV weatherman selling Wainscott home". Newsday. August 23, 2007. Retrieved December 4, 2009.("The family moved to Bohemia when he was in the eighth grade, and he graduated from Connetquot High School in 1975"
- Staff report (September 19, 2003). King of Hype talks up Isabel. Philadelphia Daily News
- Nese, Jon M.; Schwartz, Glenn; Rendell, Edward G. (2005). The Philadelphia Area Weather Book. Temple University Press, ISBN 9781592133918
- Pressler, Jessica (2007-06-01). "The Most Famous Weatherman in Philadelphia". Philadelphia Magazine. Retrieved 2007-07-06.
- Fox29 suspends weatherguy Bolaris
- Bolaris no longer employed by Fox 29
- John Bolaris, girlfriend Erica Smitheman get engaged on Howard Stern show
- "Drugged & duped: Bolaris' perfect storm"
- Miami Beach Bar Girls Defrauded Men at Nightclubs, Say Feds
- John Bolaris suspended by Fox 29
- Bolaris suspended from Fox 29
- Bolaris no longer at Fox 29 WTXF
- "Message Boards". 12/12 Weatherman’s Real Life Hangover. Drphil.com. Retrieved December 11, 2012.
- "John Bolaris, girlfriend Erica Smitheman get engaged on Howard Stern show"