Rain chances decrease, and temperatures may drop
Will the weather cooperate with your Thanksgiving plans?
If you’re wondering what kind of weather to expect on Thanksgiving Day, AccuWeather’s Ariella Scalese has the forecast for you.
The Thanksgiving forecast for Florida looks drier, as the massive low pressure system drenching the eastern United States heads toward the coast. Great news for Floridians to stay put, bad news for anyone traveling to and from those areas before the holiday.
Heavy rains and thunderstorms generated by the system currently extend from the Gulf Coast through the Tennessee and Ohio valleys, into the Midwest and the southern portion of the Great Lakes, according to the National Weather Service.
“More severe thunderstorms are expected early today across the lower Mississippi Valley with the exception of severe weather before cold, dry air arrives behind a dynamic cold front,” said Kwan Yin Kong and Robert Oravec of the National Weather Service.
Snow is expected in parts of northern Pennsylvania and upstate New York to central and northern New England through Tuesday evening, AccuWeather meteorologists said. “3 to 6 inches of snow is expected to fall in the Adirondacks and Green Mountains, while 6 to 12 inches is expected to accumulate from central New Hampshire to much of northwest Maine,” AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Alex Sosnowski said. .
Some strong thunderstorms are expected to head south and inland southeast from Tuesday night into Wednesday morning, with severe weather and tornadoes possible across parts of southern Alabama and the Florida Panhandle on Tuesday, the weather service said.
So far, 11,202 flights have been delayed as of Tuesday afternoon, according to FlightAware’s live statistics, with 629 flights cancelled. In a recent ranking, three of the five worst airports to fly from on vacation are in Florida.
However, by Thanksgiving, the system was supposed to move away from the East Coast, leaving behind dry, clear weather. The National Weather Service predicts that most of Florida will see none of this, with rain possible in the Panhandle, parts of northern Florida and the southern tip of the peninsula, but skies will be clear everywhere else in the state.
More than 55 million people will travel for Thanksgiving weekend
The National Automobile Club AAA expects more than 3 million Floridians to travel 50 miles or more during the Thanksgiving holiday travel period, out of more than 55.3 million Americans nationwide. This is the third highest travel numbers nationwide during Thanksgiving since 2000 and nearly 1.3 million more than last year.
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Will it rain on Thanksgiving in Florida?
Depending on where you are, maybe, at least that evening while you’re on vacation.
In the Panhandle, as of Tuesday, there is a 90% chance of rain Tuesday, a 60% chance later in the evening, a 20% chance early Wednesday, and then a 30% chance of rain Thursday night, according to To the National Weather Service.
Tallahassee may see some rain Thursday night (20% chance) but you can expect a couple of rainy days first. The Met Office said there was a 40% chance of thunderstorms on Tuesday, with a 90% chance of rain in the evening. Rainfall is expected to begin on Wednesday and then decline throughout the day. By Tuesday night into Wednesday, rain may hit the Jacksonville area, but the day is expected to be partly sunny with a 20% chance of rain in the evening.
Central Florida is expecting 40% rain on Wednesday but Thanksgiving will be partly sunny, forecasters said.
Southwest Florida will see partly sunny days and partly cloudy nights throughout the week, but no rain is expected until Friday. Southeast Florida could see some rain Wednesday night (30% chance) but will have a partly sunny Thanksgiving to look forward to, the NWS said.
South Florida is the only area in the state where rain is expected during Thanksgiving day (20%).
However, there is a slight chance of rain in areas of the Florida Keys from Thursday through the weekend.
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Will it be hot or cold on Thanksgiving in Florida?
It’s not quite wintry yet, but a cold front accompanying a low pressure area sweeping across the country will drop temperatures in the Panhandle into the upper 40s through Wednesday night and into the low 60s on Thanksgiving, according to Tuesday’s forecast from the NWS.
North Florida can expect temperatures in the low to mid 60s on Thursday and Friday, with overnight lows in the 40s.
Central Florida will be a bit warmer, with temperatures in the high 70s until Wednesday night dips into the 60s, the weather service said.
The cold front may still impact Southwest Florida, but only enough to drop temperatures Thursday to just 76 degrees with overnight lows before and after in the low 60s.
Southeast Florida will drop into the low 70s on Thanksgiving, with overnight lows in the low 60s.
South Florida is supposed to see Thanksgiving in the low 80s, with nights in the low 70s.
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What does the Farmer’s Almanac predict for Thanksgiving weather in Florida?
According to the calendar, it’s time to “grab some hot cider!” Conditions in the Southeast, including Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi and Florida, are expected to be fair but cool. “Cold” is relative to the Sunshine State, of course.
The calendar predicted the return of cold weather in its 2023-2024 winter forecast, with a greater chance of rain in the Southeast.
“The Southeast and Florida will see a wetter-than-normal winter, with generally average winter temperatures, but a little frost may send a lot of shivers down snowbirds trying to avoid the cold and snow back home,” the Farmers Almanac predicted.
The Old Farmers’ Almanac, a competitor, forecasts warm weather and scattered rain from November 23-30.
What does the Farmers’ Almanac predict for Thanksgiving weather across the country?
If you’re traveling for the holidays, here’s what you can expect, according to the Farmers’ Almanac:
- Northeast and New England: New York, Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland and Washington, D.C., are supposed to see “mostly moderate but cool weather.”
- Great Lakes, Ohio Valley, and Midwest: Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Kentucky, Illinois and Wisconsin may see rain and possibly snow beforehand but will see a “fair but mostly cold Thanksgiving.”
- North Central: Missouri, Iowa, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Colorado, Wyoming and Montana may experience light snow in the Rocky Mountains before the holiday, followed by heavy snow in the Nebraska and Dakota area.
- South Central: Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Texas and New Mexico are supposed to see a “clear and cool” holiday, with some stormy weather from the west.
- North West: Washington, Oregon and Idaho may see “wet rain and snow.”
- Southwest: California, Nevada, Utah and Arizona could have a “rainy Thanksgiving,” the calendar said.
USA TODAY reporter Doyle Rice contributed to this article.