GREAT "GET AWAY DAY" WEATHER FOR HOLIDAY TRAVELERS IS FOLLOWED BY INCREASING PRECIPITATION CHANCES FOR THE HOLIDAY WEEKEND
SPRINGFIELD (WICS) - Whether you're getting ready to hit the road, take to the sky or hop on-board Amtrak, "Get Away Day" weather will be nearly perfect with pleasantly mild temperatures running about 10 degrees above normal for late November. Likewise, if you're staying home for the holidays, you'll have quiet weather -- albeit a bit breezy at times in the afternoon -- Wednesday to do some last minute leaf raking to make sure everything looks great when company arrives for the big Thanksgiving Day feast.
Wednesday starts out with abundant sunshine in the morning, but clouds and southerly breezes will both be increasing Wednesday afternoon as a slow moving cold front approaches from the northwest. Our in-house "RPM" (Rapid Precision Mesoscale) Forecast Model keeps central Illinois rain-free Wednesday night, but a few light scattered showers will be possible by daybreak on Thanksgiving Day. Otherwise, the rest of the day looks to be dry with cloudy skies and mild temperatures with highs in the low 60s.
Rain chances will increase and become more widespread by Thursday night as the cold front finally pushes into central Illinois. Rain will be steady and moderate at times, but not heavy enough to pose any flooding concerns. About 1/2 to 1.5" of rain is projected between Thursday night and midday on "Black Friday". Temperatures will begin to fall through the rest of the day Friday and will be much cooler for the remainder of the weekend. The front is expected to stall out Friday in the vicinity of mid-Illinois and a few additional disturbances sliding along the front could bring additional rain chances Saturday and Sunday. Despite cooling temperatures, it will stay just warm enough to keep precipitation chances all-rain over the weekend and stave off any chance for any snowflakes.
Looking ahead to the coming week, central Illinois will be squeezed between a couple of weather makers -- one to the north, the other to the south -- and that could bring a few more chances for rain showers Monday or Tuesday. Meanwhile, the 8 to 14 Day Outlook from NOAA's Climate Prediction Center once again shows the likelihood of above average temperatures and below normal precipitation chances heading into the first half of December.
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THE 7-DAY TEMPERATURE OUTLOOK: Look for highs in the mid 50s Wednesday; low 60s Thanksgiving Day; near 50 Friday; mid to upper 40s Saturday through Tuesday. Overnight lows will fall to the upper 40s Wednesday night; upper 40s Thursday night; and, mid to upper 30s Friday through Monday night.
Joe Crain - Storm Team Meteorologist
Today's Record Temperatures