Saturday, May 21, 2011
Record-Breaking Triple Digit Heat and a World Record are in sight!
Great to talk with you again! It is all about the big numbers over the next few days. The latest models in this morning are going nuts when it comes to this next heat wave building in. It looks like we will see our hottest weather of the year and I really do think some of those warmer interior locations could nip 100 degrees in the shade by late Sunday and Monday, especially for those located near Alma, Georgia!This is not including the heat index which makes it even more impressive. The earliest 100 degree day on record for Jacksonville was set on May 13, 1967. While I do think we officially will fall shy of it with a high of 97 on Sunday and 98 Monday it will be close enough to get your attention and we have a good shot at breaking the record high of 97 set back in 1960 on Monday.
It is fitting we are talking about highs near 100 since Callahan is celebrating its centennial this weekend. Nature is also on cue with this dog day weather for the Trail of Tails benefiting the Jax Humane Society taking place at the Jacksonville Landing highlighting by dogs taking a dip in the water to stay cool. With all this talk about big numbers this morning, the biggest number I could find was 7,384 which is the World Record for the most people doing the Hokey Pokey dance. Today at 5:30 p.m. head to Neptune Beach so you can be a part of history by setting our very own world record at the Dancin' in the Streets Fest. I think we have enough sunshine to have at least 10,000 folks doing the Hokey Pokey in the sun, without a doubt. The good news is the beach is the place to beat the heat today with a sea breeze moving in by mid-afternoon. You see the beach planner above and it gives you yet another reason to think big today!
The reason for this hot weather is an area of high pressure will slowly build in from the West at all levels of the atmosphere. This tends to stifle the sea-breeze and any thunderstorm activity that can cool us down this time of year. The atmosphere looks too dry for the sea-breeze to fire up any thunderstorms today and it will be delayed until late afternoon for most areas near the river. This is the recipe for hot, hot, hot! This morning nature was off to a smoking start at the baseball fields near the corner of Kernan and Atlantic Blvd. Glenn Sebold sent this in and the good news is this fire was brought quickly under control. Our First Coast News softball team had a smoke delay but now it is time to play ball! The bad news is more fire activity is likely with no appreciable rain until later next week. There is plenty of hope on this morning's models for rain. Take a look at all the blue and purple shading near us. This means an average of .50" to 1" of rain is looking more likely. We will have to be patient and keep our fingers crossed that a trough of low pressure that is bringing tons of rain to the Midwest will in fact hold together and move our way.
Taking a look at not just the next 7 days but through August I have even better news. Our drought which is still extreme in many areas is expected to loosen its grip over our area as the La Nina pattern continues to weaken. A La Nina is synonymous with below average water temperatures in the equatorial Pacific which shift the jet stream away from Florida keeping us drier and usually warmer than normal. It set in last summer and since then we are running about 20 inches of rain below average. This summer looks much wetter with rainfall at least getting back closer to normal. It all depends on what the La Nina decides to do. Here is the latest assessment from NOAA below.
Now see I am full of good news here on this May 21st when there are many predicting gloom and doom on this date. I hope this blog helps balance everything out for you and you have the best day yet! I will have more on a great group I spoke to this past week on Hurricane Season and where I think the hot spots are this year. But since I do think we will all be here to enjoy next week I wanted to share with you some exciting news. Endeavour which lifted off this past Monday morning will be flying over Jacksonville this coming up Tuesday morning bright and early.
Look south-southwest about 10 degrees above the horizon at 5:36 a.m. It will exit in the eastern sky at 5:40 a.m. 32 degrees above the horizon. If you are in my neighborhood, I will bring the doughnuts. See you there! We will not need a telescope. Have a great day and keep your head up and your eyes to the sky. You deserve the best weatherwise and otherwise.