A nice day; southern MN showers likely Thursday night

Tuesday was a grand day, if you are into sunshine and temperatures in the upper 60s to middle 70s and rather light winds!  Today will be a repeat.

I've been tracking the development of the next weather-maker since early this week and the question remains: How far north into Minnesota will the rain extend?

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The computer models in the last 24 hours have generally trended toward keeping the best chance of soaking rains to the south of the Twin Cities. However, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's North American Mesoscale Model continues to tease meteorologists with the potential for rain farther north.

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NAM simulated radar reflectivity at 4 a.m. CDT Friday morning. Image:NOAA/College of Dupage

Stay tuned for how this shapes up as we move through the next 36 hours. Regardless, an increase in cloud cover is on tap over southern Minnesota as we move through the day on Thursday.

Forecasters from NOAA's Weather Prediction Center  show the sharp cutoff of heavy rain on Thursday night and Friday.

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Although the Fargo-Moorhead area has been short on rainfall this summer, nearly 2 inches (1.88) below normal since June 1, much of the region has accumulated substantial precipitation during the growing season.

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Precipitation for August, through the 24th. Image: Midwest Regional Climate Center

Temperatures so far this month have averaged near or slightly below normal.

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Image:Midwest Regional Climate Center

As we move through the last week of August into the start of the meteorological autumn, we  note that the average maximum temperature for Minneapolis-St. Paul drops from 78 on Aug. 29 to 76 by Sept. 5.  Thus a forecast of above-normal temperatures next week translates to highs in the 80s.

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Six to ten day temperature outlook. Image:NOAA

Temperatures on Saturday afternoon are expected to be pleasant with a return to sunshine statewide.

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Tropical Storm Erika continues on a track to the west northwest this morning.

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Water Vapor satellite image from NOAA.
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You can follow the latest information on Erika from the National Hurricane Center.

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