Inquiring Minds: Does Anyone Really Know What Time It Is (in Arizona)?

Watch imageLibrarian Judy Woodward compiles the most interesting reference questions and sends them to the Roseville Review. Got a question for us? Ask A Librarian!

Here's today's timely question:

Q. What’s the difference in time between Minnesota and Arizona?

A. Thanks to Arizona’s unique policy on the observation of Daylight Savings Time, this is not an easy question to answer. Alone among the states in the Lower Forty-Eight, Arizona does not observe Daylight Savings Time. That means that during the cold months of the year, Arizona is one hour earlier than Minnesota. They’re on Mountain Standard Time and we’re on Central Standard Time. As soon as Daylight Savings Time begins, we “spring” forward an hour, but they stay just where they are, opening up a two-hour gap between our time zones from March to October.

Just to complicate things further, the foregoing applies to most—but not all--of Arizona. Unlike the rest of the state, the Navajo Nation in northeastern Arizona does observe Daylight Savings Time.

If you have friends or relatives in Arizona, maybe the best advice is to cultivate spontaneity in your real-time communications. “It’s so cold in Minnesota that I was thinking about you snowbirds in the Grand Canyon State,” might be a good opening line. “What time is it down there, anyway?” (Internet Resources.)


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