ROCKFORD (WREX) — The first freeze of the fall season hits tonight, then the weather stays a little chilly into early next week. More wind and rain joins the chill this weekend.
Tonight gets cold enough for the first widespread freeze of the fall season. Temperatures drop into the upper 20's in spots under clear and calm weather. Freeze Warnings from the National Weather Service go into effect after midnight. Look for freezing weather through 9 am Friday.
This is likely the end of the growing season. Sensitive plants like those in your garden likely get killed off by the cold tonight. You can try to keep your garden alive by covering it up and watering the soil tonight.
Temperatures stay in the 30's at night through Monday night, but likely just above freezing. Sunday night could drop to near freezing again. Tonight likely is the coldest night of the upcoming cool stretch.
Cool, windy, rainy weekend:
After a brisk Friday, the weather warms up a little for the start of the weekend. Temperatures rise to the middle 60's Saturday, with help from some windy conditions. Just like Wednesday, wind gusts may hit 40 to 50 mph by Saturday afternoon. Be ready for leaves and other loose objects to blow around again. The winds should settle down Saturday night, and remain calmer on Sunday.
On top of a windy day Saturday, scattered rain showers are possible throughout the weekend. The first chance comes early Saturday morning in the form of light showers or sprinkles. The rest of the day should remain cloudy and dry until the evening. Then, on-and-off light rainfall is possible through Saturday evening and night.
The best chance for rain comes Sunday morning. A line of showers comes through ahead of a cold front. Look for steady rain for a couple of hours Sunday morning after sunrise. The weather should dry out by the afternoon, but become much colder. Highs Sunday may only warm up to the upper 40's.
Cool next week:
Once a chilly Sunday wraps up, next week warms up a little. We'll see temperatures back into the low 50's early next week, followed by the 60's by the middle of the week. We may drop again by next weekend, however.
Rain chances may pop up a few times next week as well. The best chances for rain look to be Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday, for now. These days may not be washouts just yet. Overall, look for rain to be a frequent guest in the Stateline, especially when compared to the dry weather we've had for long stretches this summer and fall.