Stormy weekend: Heavy rain and slight severe threat

Welcome to Minnesota, Land of 10,000 Weather Extremes.

Will somebody please tell the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration forecast models that the vast majority of Minnesotans like nice weekends? Especially “graduation party” weekends? Father’s Day?

I’ve been kicking the Weather Lab computers and pleading with the Doppler all week to try and divert our incoming weekend storm system.

No such luck.

We earn our summers in Minnesota. It feels like we make a weather pact with nature in our challenging climate zone. Minnesotans endure brutal winters and reluctant springs. In return we’re supposed to get a majority of glorious summer weekends to play on the lakes and soak up the summer sun. Still waiting on that one.

Here’s the breakdown on another stormy summer weekend in Minnesota. Please remember, I’m just the (reluctant) weather messenger.

  • .18 inches rainfall at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport the past 6 days (brief respite from heavy rains)
  • 2.84 inches North American Mesoscale model rainfall output this weekend at MSP
  • 3.52 inches Global Forecast System model rainfall output at MSP in next 16 days

Weather Tip: Right now Sunday afternoon and evening looks like the driest and brightest part of the weekend.

Weather Dodge-Ball

Sometimes it seems there’s a big weather target painted on Minnesota.  Cue our next weather maker, another strong moisture laden low pressure system spinning in from the west this weekend. The good news? Watch the last frame of the loop below as the storm shows signs of clearing out for a nicer Father’s Day afternoon and evening.


Heavy rain threat

The main feature with this weekends system is heavy downpours. This system is moisture rich, and moving slow enough that storms with tropical-style downpours are a concern. The weekend gully-washers will likely produce some 1- to 3-inch rainfall totals over Minnesota by midday Sunday.

Here’s the latest three-day rainfall outlook for NOAA. Another weather bull’s-eye over Minnesota.


Severe risk too

I think the majority of the weather headlines this weekend will favor heavy downpours, but I can’t rule out a few severe storms with hail and high winds. NOAA’s Storm prediction center paints a slight risk for severe weather Saturday over a good chunk of Minnesota.


Here’s a little finer point on the severe threat Saturday. The highest chances for severe storms and tornadoes occur over over eastern Nebraska. SPC highlights a “significant risk” (45 pecent)  for Omaha, with a 15 percent risk for severe storms in the Twin Cities.


Here’s the breakdown for this weekend. I think most of Minnesota will see two or three separate waves of thunderstorms this weekend. For the metro the hours between late Saturday morning and noon Sunday look to be the stormiest. Your best chance for a sunny stroll or boat ride? Sunday afternoon and evening. Monday looks nice.



June Monsoon continues next week

Yes that weather gig in Arizona was monotonous at times. But at least I could deliver good news nine of 10 days. After a nice Monday, the next low pressure wave ride in Monday night into Tuesday with another shot of soaking rains.

Can our soggy soils, lakes and rivers handle any more rain?


Keep the umbrella and kayak handy this weekend, and hope for a sunnier nicer Sunday afternoon and evening.

Moonrise over the city of Rome on June 23, 2013. Filippo Monteforte/AFP/Getty Image

Full ‘Strawberry Moon’ on Friday the 13th for first time in 95 years

Technically, the full moon occurred at 11:11 p.m. on June 12 in Minnesota. But it was already Friday the 13th on the East Coast and everywhere else east of Minnesota. Here’s a great read from my MPR colleague Liala Helal on the rare full “strawberry moon” on Friday the 13th.

There’s something rosy about this Friday the 13th.

It’s the first full moon on a Friday the 13th in June in 95 years, according, and it also happens to be a “Strawberry Moon” or “Honey Moon.” It may appear pink, or have a gold hue.

The name Strawberry Moon is given to full moons that happen in June, according to National Geographic.

It dates back to ancient cultures, when moons were named based on the behaviors of plants, animals or the weather. In North America, the harvesting of strawberries in June gave the full moon its name. Europeans call it the Rose Moon and other cultures named it the Hot Moon for the beginning of summer heat.

The Strawberry Moon tends to appear pink if there’s enough humidity in the air, explained David Falkner, president of the Minnesota Astronomical Society. “The humidity acts as a lens,” he said. “If the air gets drier, it may not be as evident.”

He added that a low moon seen through the horizon might look pinker than when it’s high in the sky. That’s because when you look out to the horizon, you’re looking through more air mass and “any humidity is kind of compounded.” This full moon rides especially low because it’s so near the summer solstice on June 21.

Past and future full moons on Friday the 13th:

March 13, 1903
Oct. 13, 1905
June 13, 1919
Jan. 13, 1922
Nov. 13, 1970
July 13, 1984
Feb. 13, 1987
March 13, 1998
Oct. 13, 2000
June 13, 2014
Aug. 13, 2049
April 13, 2063
Nov. 13, 2065
Feb. 13, 2082

  • Starquest

    Some of us like storms on weekends when we can enjoy them. Especially us non-boat, non-cabin-owning plebes 🙂