Snow on Saturday? Maybe

Published: Thursday, January 7, 2010 at 2:19 p.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, January 7, 2010 at 2:19 p.m.

The cold grip on Florida may actually lead to snow flurries in Alachua and Marion counties as well as other parts of North Florida early this weekend.

Rain expected ahead of a second cold front tonight has been predicted to cause flurries in parts of southeastern Georgia, according to the National Weather Service in Jacksonville. But forecasts didn't call for those conditions in this area. Flash forward to early Saturday, however, and the story is different.

After the rain moves through and the front settles south, a wave is expected to form and will send moisture surging back north, said meteorologist Jason Deese.

"Cold air will be in place and that's when we will have light rain mixed with possibly light snow," he said.

Freezing weather is expected to continue through Tuesday with a warming trend Wednesday with highs in the 60s and lows in the low to mid 30s.

Gainesville had a low temperature of 21 degrees Thursday morning, Deese said. That breaks the 22-degree record set in 1924.

If the cold continues as expected, the area could break the 1960 record for the most consecutive days with a minimum temperature of 32 degrees or lower. The freezing temperatures started locally over the past weekend on Saturday when the low reached 32 degrees.

Gainesville did break a record for winter peak electricity demand Thursday morning, Gainesville Regional Utilities reported. At 7:26 a.m. Thursday the usage hit 451 megawatts breaking the record set last February of 445 megawatts. Typically, usage during a winter day locally is 270 to 280 megawatts.

The figure falls short of 484 megawatts, the record demand for electricity set on Aug. 8, 2009.

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