Intense Labor Day weekend heat wave could set records

Highs of 95 to 100 degrees possible

Forecast high temperatures Sunday
Forecast high temperatures Sunday.
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

The steamy summer of 2023 keeps on giving.

Another record-setting heat wave looks increasingly likely as we move through the Labor Day weekend in Minnesota. A hot dome of high pressure aloft will build over the Upper Midwest this weekend.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Global Forecast System model shows the upper-level ridge setting up overhead this weekend. The warm colors aloft translate into areas where above-average temperatures are likely at ground level.

Upper air forecast map for
Upper-air forecast map Friday and Saturday
NOAA, via Tropical Tidbits

Temperatures will be pleasant through midweek across our region. Highs Wednesday will be in the pleasantly mild 70s and 80s across Minnesota.

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Forecast high temperatures Wednesday
Forecast high temperatures Wednesday

The heat builds in by next weekend. Highs on Saturday will push well into the 90s across our region.

Forecast high temperatures Saturday
Forecast high temperatures Saturday

Sunday likely brings the hottest day of the weekend heat wave. Some forecast models suggest temperatures could reach 100 degrees in parts of southwestern Minnesota on Sunday afternoon.

NOAA’s digital forecast database cranks out 98 degrees for the Twin Cities area Sunday afternoon.

If we get to 98 degrees Sunday afternoon it would break the record of 97 degrees set way back in 1925. Here are the record highs for the Twin Cities for the Labor Day weekend period:

  • Saturday 97 degrees (1937)

  • Sunday 97 degrees (1925)

  • Labor Day 98 degrees (1925)

  • Tuesday 98 degrees (1922)

Right now some of the forecast models I’m looking at suggest dew points and potential heat index values may be lower for the first days of this heat wave.

Expect heat advisories and possibly excessive heat warnings for the Labor Day weekend.

Stay tuned.