Weather across the Charlotte region will start the weekend wet and chilly, then turn wet and possibly wild Saturday.
But the part of the weekend that’s important to many people in the region – Sunday – should be beautiful, forecasters say.
Fans attending the Carolina Panthers’ game at Bank of America Stadium against the San Francisco 49ers will experience sunshine and temperatures climbing into the upper 50s.
That is a long ways from the frigid conditions earlier in the week.
Rain began falling before daybreak Friday across the region, and it is expected to continue for most of the day. Temperatures are in the low and mid 40s across the region, and meteorologists expect little change Friday.
A persistent flow of moisture from the Gulf of Mexico could drop between 1/2 and 3/4 of an inch of rain Friday in the Charlotte area.
The rain is expected to diminish to drizzle by late afternoon and evening, but more showers are forecast to return early Saturday morning.
Those showers will be part of the warm, unstable air mass expected to cover the region Saturday in advance of a cold front. A low pressure system is forecast to move along the front, and that could help set off some thunderstorms during the afternoon and evening, meteorologists say.
Saturday will be mild, however, with temperatures climbing into the middle 60s. Upper 60s are forecast for areas east and southeast of Charlotte.
NOAA’s Storm Prediction Center says there is a risk of severe thunderstorms and even a few tornadoes Saturday in the eastern half of North Carolina. The “at-risk” area outlined by meteorologists comes close to the Charlotte area.
But National Weather Service meteorologist Harry Gerapetritis says heavy rain will be the bigger threat Saturday afternoon, although he says he can’t rule out the chance of a severe storm.
The rain on Friday and Saturday could total up to 2 inches.
The rain will end Saturday night, followed by clearing.
After a morning low in the upper 30s, temperatures are predicted to climb into the low 50s Sunday morning, then rise into the mid and upper 50s by later in the day.
Lyttle: 704-358-6107; Twitter: @slyttle
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