Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Rain, rain, go away... it's Memphis in May!

It's Memphis and it's early May and that means Beale Street Music Fest weekend and "Memphis in Mud," right? Well, perhaps, but not because of rain during the festival this year! More on the weekend in a minute, but first we have to create some of that wet dirt!

Tonight through Friday

Low pressure is developing to our west and will track across the Mid-South over the next 24 hours. That certainly doesn't mean beautiful sunny weather, and indeed a rainy couple days are in store beginning this evening. As high pressure moves east, rain that has been threatening to cross the river all afternoon, but running into a figurative "wall," is now busting through, setting the stage for a wet night. A few claps of thunder are possible, but we're not expecting a major storm event.

By the early morning hours Thursday a cold front will arrive, setting the stage (note the subliminal music fest  reference) for a windy, cold, wet day as the low pressure system slowly inches its way through the region. Under the low, abundant cloud cover, showers, and cold air advection (meaning cold air is moving into the area) will hold temperatures nearly steady after the morning low in the mid 50s. Add in a northwest wind gusting to 25-30 mph and "feels like" temperatures will be in the 40s all day! That's roughly 30-35 degrees cooler than it felt today. You will definitely need to get the warm raincoats back out of the closet when you head to work or school in the morning!

Low pressure will move over the Mid-South over the next 48 hours, bringing rainfall, cold temperatures, and gusting northwest wind. Fortunately it departs by Friday evening (the last frame in the loop). Click here if image doesn't animate.

Thursday night will see continued showery weather with temperatures falling into the lower to mid 40s for lows by Friday morning. The wind will still be blowing, so expect it to feel like the 30s on the way out the door Friday morning. Ay caramba!, as they would say in the Memphis in May honored country of Columbia!

Any lingering showers will lift east of the metro during the morning as the low departs to the east, allowing for some sunshine to make an appearance by Friday afternoon and getting temperatures back up to the "cool" range in the 60s. Wind will still be gusty so keep that coat handy. Total rainfall amounts of an inch or so are expected.

Music Fest forecast

Friday night sees the opening of the gates for Music Fest weekend and though the rain will be done, it will be rather chilly with temperatures in the 50s, a breeze off the river, and - yes - some mud from previous days' rainfall. Cute boots that wouldn't be harmed by a little "use" are in order, ladies!

The weekend looks much improved. A warming trend is expected (though Saturday evening could still be a bit cool), wind dies down, and we'll see full sunshine both days, which will help with the mud situation. I'll be down at the river all weekend as the official weather partner of Memphis in May, keeping all of you, the staff, and volunteers, safe and comfortable. This weekend should be a pretty easy one, but they aren't all that way, as you well know!

Next week also looks great through at least mid-week if not longer as a broad area of high pressure settles over the central U.S., providing mostly sunny skies and more seasonal temperatures.

Erik Proseus
MWN Meteorologist

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