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A soggy spring so far: Rainy, cool weekend looms

POSTED: May 4, 2013 1:06 a.m.

So where did spring go?

So far, April showers have carried over into May, leaving us with a cool, wet weekend that may throw a damper on some outdoor plans.

Friday, the National Weather Service issued a flood watch for Hall and surrounding counties. About a tenth of an inch of rain was measured by the NWS recording station at Gainesville’s Lee Gilmer Memorial Airport. The heavy rains caused creeks and rivers to swell with water, raising the chance of flooding in low-lying areas.

The rain was enough to wash out the planned First Friday concert on the downtown square in Gainesville.

But though spring still seems to be hanging out around the corner, meteorologist Mike Leary with the weather service office in Peachtree City reminds us this time of year is known for its unpredictable nature.

“That’s springtime — a little winter, a little bit of summer,” he said.

The yearly rainfall total is some 5 inches above the norm for this point of the year. A year ago today, temperatures were already in the mid-80s.

But one benefit to all the rain is clear, beyond the greener lawns: Lake Lanier’s water level today is at a full pool of 1,071.95 feet above sea level, 7 feet above where it sat last May.

Today’s forecast calls for a 100 percent chance of showers, though little chance of thunder or lightning from strong storms, Leary said. Up to a half-inch to three-quarters of an inch of rain are possible, with cool temperatures struggling to reach 60 degrees.

Overnight, look for another inch or two of rains with gusty winds and a chilly low in the high 40s.

Sunday is likely more of the same, with cool temps in the upper 50s and an 80 percent chance of rain into Sunday night. Sunday also brings a great chance of a thunderstorm.

Leary said the pattern should ease up by Monday with temperatures getting back into the 60s and a lesser chance of rain. It should warm to the mid-70s by midweek, he said, with a chance of pop-up storms, a more typical summertime pattern.

One planned event, the Lula Railroad Days Parade and Festival, is scheduled to go on today rain or shine. The Hall County town’s celebration begins at 10 a.m. and runs until 7 p.m. with arts, crafts and entertainment.

The Rubber Duck Derby at Clarks Bridge Park also will go on, with the race set for 3 p.m. It’s possible, though, that the festival portion, which starts at 10 a.m., will be canceled if the weather doesn’t cooperate.

The forecast of rain did wash out one event, the planned Touch-A-Truck Festival set for Sunday at Laurel Park. It will be rescheduled later.


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