Stormy Skies Fade...
 
What a great picture from @EddieGreatLakes from Escanaba, MI. Storms rolled across Lake Michigan on Friday evening and this is what he caught looking toward Door County, WI. Keep in mind that these were some of the same storms that blew through parts of central MN and western Wisconsin late Friday afternoon/evening. 
 
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2019 Lightning Fatalities
 
According to NOAA, there have been a total of 8 lightning fatalities across the nation so far this year. The most recent was on July 14th in Colorado. Keep in mind that an average of nearly 40 to 50 people die every year from lightning across the US.
 
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Saturday Morning Storms via Satellite
 
Saturday morning was pretty soggy across the southern half of the state. Widespread showers and storms, some of which were a little on the strong/severe side produced areas of heavy rainfall. It appears that we may have a little more rain in the forecast PM Sunday, but the next several days looks to be dry. 
 
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Sunday Weather Outlook
 
It'll be another cooler day across the region with high temps in the mid/upper 70s and even lower 80s. These temps will be running nearly -5F below average for the middle part of July. The good news is that dewpoints will more comfortable with readings in the upper 50s. 
 
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Extended Temperature Outlook

Here's the temperature outlook through the rest of July and into the early part of August. Note that after the excessive heat late last week, temps will finally take a dip into more cooler and comfortable conditions through the weekend and through much of next week. Highs will only warm into the upper 70s and low/mid 80s. 

 
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Weather Outlook Ahead

After a somewhat soggy Saturday across the southern half of the state, weather conditions for the first half of the day Sunday and into the early part of next of next week look much nicer! As we head through the last full week of July, it appears that more comfy temps and humidity values will be in place with plentifuly sunshine. Enjoy!

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Rainfall Potential Through PM Tuesday

Here's the rainfall potential through PM Tuesday, which shows fairly dry conditions across much of the state. Despite seeing mostly dry conditions, we can't rule out an isolated shower here or there during the PM hours of Sunday, Monday and Tuesday. Stay tuned.

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"Dangerous Heat Wave Affects Millions - Significant Severe Risk In Midwest"
 
Key Messages:
  • Two thirds of the United States will experience dangerous heat and high humidity with heat indices climbing to 105 to 110 degrees. The Midwest, Central U.S., Ohio Valley, Mid Atlantic, and Northeast are under Excessive Heat Warnings and Heat Advisories into the weekend.

  • Numerous record highs and overnight warm minimum temperatures are likely. Hot temperatures at night pose a significant threat as most don’t tend to think of how hot, humid weather at night can affect the human body.

  • This is a prolonged heat event that will last through the weekend.

  • Millions will be affected with our largest cities being impacted by the heat wave: New York City, Boston, Philadelphia, Washington DC, Cincinnati, Detroit, Chicago, Minneapolis, St. Louis, Kansas City, Indianapolis.

  • The “urban heat island effect” will be notable during this heat wave, with major metropolitan areas experiencing high temperatures and heat indices than their rural counterparts due to extensive land modification and human activity.

  • The Storm Prediction Center (SPC) has upgraded the severe risk to MODERATE in the upper Midwest. Strong thunderstorms with strong tornadoes and potentially widespread wind damage may occur from central Minnesota across northern WIsconsin during the mid-afternoon and evening hours.

Excessive Heat Warnings & Heat Advisories. A large ridge of high pressure stretches from the Central U.S. into the eastern tier, delivering a life-threatening heat wave through the weekend. Note that widespread Excessive Heat Warnings are in effect along with Heat Advisories. Record heat is expected. The worst of the heat will occur late afternoon into the evening for most locations (3 PM - 7 PM).

Northeast & Mid Atlantic Forecast. Widespread heat will grip the region with record temperatures possible. Afternoon temperatures will climb into the upper 90s and possibly 100. Heat indices will peak between 105 and 110 degrees with a few locations even peaking above 110 this weekend.

Central Plains and Midwest Forecast. Dangerous heat and humidity will be in progress for this part of the country today. Into the weekend, we will see improvements as the heat breaks from west to east with a cold front progressing through. By Sunday, most of the dangerous heat will have subsided.

Heat Safety Tips. Here are some heat safety tips from NOAA for the next several days. This heat is not to be taken lightly through the rest of the week and the weekend across the central and Northeastern United States. While we typically see hot weather during the summer, it’ll be the stretch of consecutive hot days and warm nights that will be problematic. You can find more heat safety tips here: https://www.weather.gov/safety/heat

Susie Martin, Meteorologist, Praedictix.
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8-14 Day Temperature Outlook
 
According to NOAA's CPC, the 8 to 14 day temperature oulook suggests warmer than average temperatures moving back in acros the Upper Midwest and the Northeast as we head into the end of the month and early part of August.
 

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Central US Precipitation Since January 1st

Take a look at how much precipitation has fallen across the nation since January 1st. Note that much of our big surpluses are across the Central US, where some spots are nearly a foot above average! Interestingly, Minneapolis is still nearly 8" above average for the year, while much of California is still dealing with a fairly impressive surplus! The only locations that are really below average are those in the Pacific Northwest! Seattle and Portland are nearly 4" to 6" below average. 

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Activity in the Eastern Pacific

According to NOAA's NHC, there is a wave of energy that has a high chance of tropical formation within the next 5 days. So far, there have been 3 named storms, 2 of which have been hurricanes: Hurricane Alvin, Hurricane Barbara and Tropical Storm Cosme. The next named storm would be Dalila.
 
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172 Degree 'Feels Like' Swing in Just 6 Months
By Todd Nelson, filling in for Douglas.

Not sure about you, but I'm pretty sure I sweated through every piece of clothing I had on Friday. The MSP Airport recorded its 2nd highest dewpoint ever with an incredibly soupy reading of 81 degrees. The highest was 82 degrees on July 19th, 2011.

Tropical dewpoints helped to bring heat index values well into the triple digits across much of the state. My phone app boasted heat index values in the 120s, but the official reading at the MSP Aiport was a whopping 115F! If you're keeping score, within the last 6 months, we've endured a 172 degree 'feels like' temperature swing. Peak heat index of 115 degrees on Friday, July 19th and a minimum wind chill of -57 degrees on January 29th. Uffda!

Weather conditions today will be much more tame. Comfy temps and humidity values will make for a fairly enjoyable Sunday. After a somewhat sunny start, clouds will increase with a very slight t-storm chance late.

The week ahead looks mostly dry and pleasant with temps in the low 80s and more tolerable humidity.

Happy National Ice Cream Day!
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Extended Forecast

SUNDAY: Dry start. More PM clouds. Winds: N 5. High: 80.

SUNDAY NIGHT: Slight chance of a t-shower. Winds: calm. Low: 61

MONDAY: Sunny start. Isolated PM shower. Winds: NNW 5-10. High: 79.

TUESDAY: Comfy temps and humidity. PM sprinkle. Winds: NW 5-10. Wake-up: 61. High: 81.

WEDNESDAY: Another beauty. Dry and sunny. Winds: WSW 5-10. Wake-up: 63. High: 83.

THURSDAY: Sunny and breezy. Rumble overnight. Winds: S 10-15. Wake-up: 65. High: 83.

FRIDAY: Unsettled skies. Few t-storms. Winds: WSW 10-15. Wake-up: 66. High: 85.

SATURDAY: Mainly dry. Nothing rought. Winds: NW 10-15. Wake-up: 66. High: 82.
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This Day in Weather History
July 21st

2002: Dew points reach 84 degrees at Madison, Morris, and Olivia. This ties the all time highest dew point reading in Minnesota, as recorded by the State Climatology Office.

1934: Extreme heat hits western Minnesota, and the temperature topped out at 113 at Milan.
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Average High/Low for Minneapolis
July 21st

Average High: 84F (Record: 105F set in 1934)
Average Low: 64F (Record: 49F set in 1947)

Record Rainfall: 1.36" set in 1951
Record Snowfall: NONE
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Sunrise/Sunset Times for Minneapolis
July 21st

Sunrise: 5:47am
Sunset: 8:51pm

Hours of Daylight: ~15 hours & 5 minutes

Daylight LOST since yesterday: ~ 1 minute & 55 seconds
Daylight LOST since summer solstice (June 21st): ~ 39 minutes
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Moon Phase for July 21st at Midnight
2.8 Days Before Last Quarter Moon

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What's in the Night Sky?

"In the east after dark on these July evenings, look near the horizon for Altair, the brightest star in the constellation Aquila the Eagle. This is the bottom star of the Summer Triangle; that is, it’s the last of these three bright stars to ascend over the horizon. This star is 16.7 light-years from our sun and is one of the closest stars visible to the unaided eye. You will recognize Altair for the two fainter stars on either side of it. In her classic book “The Friendly Stars” (1907), Martha Evans Martin described the three this way: Then there comes a soft June evening, with its lovely twilight that begins with the last song of the woodthrush and ends with the first strenuous admonitions of the whippoorwill; and, almost as if it were an impulse of nature, one walks to the eastern end of the porch and looks for Altair. It is sure to be there smiling at one just over the tree-tops, with a bright companion on either side, the three gently advancing in a straight line as if they were walking the Milky Way hand in hand and three abreast. And indeed the Great Rift of the summer Milky Way passes through the Summer Triangle, between the stars Vega and Altair. In dark skies in June, July and August, you can see rich star fields with your binoculars on both sides of the Great Rift. In modern western culture, Altair is probably best known for being the home star system of the aliens in the 1956 science fiction film “Forbidden Planet”. But in Asian cultures, Altair and the star Vega figure in one of the most beautiful of all stories of the night sky. In Japan, for example, Vega is sometimes called Tanabata (or Orihime), a celestial princess or goddess. She falls in love with a mortal, Kengyu (or Hikoboshi), represented by the star Altair."

See more from Earth Sky HERE:

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Average Tornadoes By State in July
 
According to NOAA, the number of tornadoes in July is quite a bit less across much of the nation, especially across the southern US. However, folks across the Plains and Upper Midwest still see (on average) a fair amount of tornadoes. Note that Minnesota typically sees 11 tornadoes, which is the 2nd highest behind June when we average 15.
 
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2019 Preliminary Tornado Count
 
Here's the 2019 preliminary tornado count across the nation, which shows nearly 1,300 tornadoes since the beginning of the year. May was a very active month and produced several hundred tornadoes across the Central uS and across parts of the Ohio Valley.
 
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2019 Preliminary Tornado Count

Here's a look at how many tornadoes there have been across the country so far this year. The preliminary count through July 19th suggests that there have been a total of 1,322  which is above the 2005-2015 short term average of 1071. Interestingly, this has been the busiest tornado season since 2011, when nearly 1,654 tornadoes were reported.
 
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Sunday Weather Outlook
 
Here's a look at high temps across the nation on Sunday, which shows dangerous levels of heat continuing across much of the Eastern Seaboard. Some areas will be nearly +10F to +15F above average with very high dewpoints making it feel more like 100F or more!


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National Weather Outlook
 
The weather outlook as we head through the rest of the weekend and into early next week shows a front sliding southeast through the eastern two-thirds of the nation. This front will be responsible for widespread shower and thunderstorm development, some of which could be strong to severe with locally heavy rain.
 

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Heavy Ranifall Potential
 
According to NOAA's WPC, areas of heavy rain will continue across parts of the Central and Eastern US with localized areas of flooding. There will also be pockets of heavy rain in the Desert Southwest where monsoon storms will develop. 
 
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"Inverse Daily: The Wild Plan to Save Antarctica With 'Snow Cannons'"
 
"Few things are more outrageous than the plan climate scientists described on Wednesday to replace the rapidly diminishing West Antarctic Ice Sheet. Hello, Inverse Daily fam. While I’m realizing how many questions I had about what happened to ‘90s tween star Jonathan Taylor Thomas, let’s get you caught up on today’s news.  If you’ve been anywhere near a social media feed in the past week, you’ve undoubtedly encountered photos of your acquaintances looking a lot older than usual. They’re the work of FaceApp, an app that applies a strong aging filter to photos to make people look like senior citizen versions of themselves. The effect is powerful — and very unsettling. (Like many users, I discovered I’m just turning into my mom.) There have been concerns that this seemingly free horror show comes at a price — specifically, access to your entire photo library. As innovation fellow Ben Powers writes, however, there’s no reason to be too worried. Innovation editor James Dennin points out that it may actually come with perks. According to some scientists, seeing an aged version of yourself can make you more conscientious in the present."
 

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"People flock to Colorado mountains to avoid heat"
 
ROCKY MOUNTAIN NATIONAL PARK, Colo. -- When record heat scorches the Denver metro area, some people head to the mountains to enjoy some of Mother Nature's air conditioning. On Trail Ridge Road at Rocky Mountain National Park, temperatures were in the 60s Thursday with a windchill that was much cooler. Meanwhile, a high of 99 degrees was recorded at Denver International Airport, tying the record for July 18 set in 1998. "We didn’t really plan on this," said Dan Didrickson, who was playing in the snow with his family. "We didn't have gloves... much less long pants, apparently." There are small patches of snow left at the national park. At pullouts near them, people stopped to take pictures and soak in the cool breeze. "This is nice up here," said Doug Goebl, who was visiting from Ohio. "I’m not a hot weather person."
 
 

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"Should You Avoid Alcohol in the Heat?"
 
"The hotter it gets, the more refreshing a beverage seems—including an ice-cold beer or a glass of frosé. But you might want to minimize your alcohol consumption during a heatwave, for safety reasons. Alcohol dehydrates you, literally. It stops the release of a natural hormone in your body called anti-diuretic hormone (ADH). Normally, ADH keeps you from peeing out too much water. That means that when you drink a lot, you’ll pee a lot, losing even more water than you’re taking in. That’s not a huge deal if you only have one or two drinks and you make sure to keep hydrated, but the more you drink ,the more dehydrated you’ll get, and the less control you’ll have over your own judgment. So as a safety tip, it’s best to avoid alcohol or keep it to a minimum on very hot days. Dehydration can make it easier to get heat illness, which in extreme cases can be life threatening."
 
 

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"‘Quite phenomenal’: Arctic heatwave hits most northerly settlement in world"
 
"‘It’s an absolute record, we’ve never seen that before,’ says Canadian meteorologist. The planet’s most northerly human settlement is in the midst of an “unprecedented” heatwave as parts of the Arctic endure one of their hottest summers on record. Canada’s weather agency confirmed on Tuesday that temperatures in Alert, Nunavut, peaked at 21C at the weekend – far exceeding the July average for the area of around 5C. Overnight temperatures on Sunday remained above 15C; again, well in excess of nighttime lows that usually hover around freezing in a settlement that lies less than 900km from the North Pole."
 
 

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"‘Sunny-day flooding’ is projected to put parts of the US underwater for at least 100 days per year. Here’s what the Gulf and East coasts should expect."
 
"Increasingly, sunny days don't guarantee dry ground for those living along the coast. As sea levels rise due to climate change, high tides are creeping further up onto coastal land, flooding communities even without any rain or stormy weather. Oceans along US coasts have risen nearly 10 inches (25 centimeters) since 1920 (12 inches when you factor in sinking land). That has led high-tide flooding to occur twice as often now as it did nearly two decades ago, according to a recent report from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)."
 
 

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"EPA: Unhealthy Air Days Increased in 2018"
 
"The agency’s annual air quality report found that last year saw an increase in the number of days that air pollution could have harmed sensitive populations. THE NUMBER OF DAYS WITH air pollution levels high enough to endanger elderly people or children increased last year, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. The agency's annual air quality report found that among 35 major U.S. cities last year, there were a combined 799 days when the air was unhealthy for "sensitive" groups, which the EPA said can include the elderly, children, and people with heart or respiratory diseases. Concentrations of several air pollutants, including ozone and particulate matter, increased from 2017 to 2018, according to the report."
 
 

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A somewhat soggy Saturday ahead, but heat and humidity break

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Dry And Pleasant Weather To Start The Work Week!