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Severe Thunderstorms in the Plains & Midwest for Memorial Day Weekend

23 May 2020, 7:25 am

The Plains have seen an active severe weather week and that will likely continue through the Memorial Day weekend. For Saturday, the Storm Prediction Center has outlined a large severe thunderstorm risk area from the Canadian Border in North Dakota to the Mexican Border in Texas, in addition to a smaller region across the Midwest and Mississippi River Valley. Large hail and strong wind gusts are the primary threats, with a few tornadoes possible, particularly in Northern Illinois.

Strong mid-level winds will move into the High Plains around a large trough of low pressure moving through the Northwest and Great Basin. Sufficient moisture is expected to return due to good southerly flow at the lower-levels which should promote moderate to strong instability in the region during peak-heating hours.

The Storm Prediction Center has highlighted the potential for organized lines of strong storms, which are expected to move southeastward in the evening or perhaps overnight. If storms become organized in this fashion, the threat for widespread damaging downdraft winds is expected.

Snapshots of the forecast radar have been added below to help time the storms. Close-ups of the Midwest risk area are followed by an overview of the entire area.

As a cold front from this system pushes farther south and east on Sunday, the system is expected to continue to fire up strong to severe storms. There is a slight risk for severe weather in a corridor  from Iowa to West Texas. Isolated tornadoes will be possible but large hail and damaging winds will likely remain the more widespread threats.

If you are in the outlined risk areas for this weekend, check back with WeatherNation on-air and online for the latest forecast and alerts.

About the author
Mace was born and raised in Minnesota, where his intrigue for weather and broadcasting grew at a young age. His 30 years in broadcasting have taken him all across the Midwest and in the South. During high school and college, Mace first worked at a number of radio stations which helped pay tuition bills and get him ready for a career in television. His first TV Meteorology job was in Wausau, WI, fo... Load Morellowed by stops in Grand Rapids, MI, Fort Myers, FL, Tampa, FL, Cedar Rapids, IA and then across the country on WeatherNation. Mace is one of our Digital Meteorologists, posting weather stories on our website and social media accounts. He is also a game-day Meteorologist for the Minnesota Twins.

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