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Cooler, cloudy week gives way to weekend storms, warmer temps

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ROCKFORD (WREX) — Memorial Day is the unofficial start to summer and Mother Nature seems to have gotten the memo.

Cloudy and cool for now:

Before getting into the details of the 80°+ weather this weekend, cloudy skies and cooler temperatures are going to rule the roost today. The upper-level low that has only slowly made it into the Tennessee River Valley is retrograding northward. What does this mean locally? It means cloud cover is going to remain firmly in place alongside those easterly winds that have been so hard to shake of late.

Cloudy skies are likely to hold temperatures back a handful of degrees below average for Thursday.

Temperatures Thursday afternoon are going to climb into the middle and upper 60s, which is a handful of degrees below average. Slowly, the tide is going to be turned on the cooler-than-average temperatures as the weekend approaches.

Memorial Day weekend:

Friday keeps the mostly cloudy skies around, but southeasterly winds are going to return. This is going to usher in a gradual warm-up for the end of the week. Highs Friday climb into the lower 70s with only a slight chance for a shower or two.

As temperatures continue to climb and high pressure builds over the Southeast into the weekend, storm chances locally increase. Saturday morning is going to feature showers and even a few thunderstorms. Severe weather isn't expected, but some locally heavy rainfall and frequent lightning could occur.

The jet stream comes close to the Stateline as high pressure builds across the Southeast. Increased storm chances are the result of building summer-like heat and humidity.

Sunday is likely to feature the warmest day of the year so far, with highs reaching into the lower 80s. With the extra warmth and humidity on the heels of southerly to southwesterly winds, thunderstorms make a return to the forecast.

The weekend isn't going to be a washout, so don't cancel any outdoor plans just yet. Have a rain plan if outdoor activities were on the docket for the Memorial Day weekend and when thunder roars, be sure to head indoors.

The unofficial start to summer features temperatures in the lower 80s both Sunday and Monday.

Justin Ballard

Justin Ballard joined 13 WREX as the weekday morning meteorologist. He’s a proud graduate of UNC-Charlotte and happy to call Rockford home.

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