Gainesville basks in suddenly warmer weather

Daytime temperatures here hit 64 Saturday, a relief from colder weather


Clayton Waterhouse rakes leaves in sunny afternoon weather at his house on Southwest Williston Road in Gainesville on Saturday.

Brad McClenny/staff photographer
Published: Saturday, January 15, 2011 at 6:16 p.m.
Last Modified: Saturday, January 15, 2011 at 10:26 p.m.

Given the recent surge of cold weather, it's understandable that friends Clinton Rodgers and Yvette Tran found themselves a little warm when they ran to Squirrel Ridge Park and then threw a Frisbee around on Saturday afternoon.

But the University of Florida students weren't complaining about the relatively balmy temperatures.

"It's a lot more pleasant today. We ran here from down the street to throw a Frisbee, and it's definitely a lot warmer than we expected," Rodgers said at the Williston Road park.

Added Tran after taking off some layers, "I had to change. I was all bundled up."

For area residents who have had a chill this winter, Saturday's high of 64 was welcome relief.

Donna Vidal took her "granddog" — a 13-month-old pit bull belonging to her son, Ryan — to the park for a romp in the dog run. She was happy to be in the warmth and sun.

"A day like today is one of the best days to be out in Florida," Vidal said. "It can be cool out and if the Florida sun is there, I'm happy."

Saturday was the first day that warmed into the 60s since Monday, when the high was 68.

And the cold of the last few days will not return until possibly next weekend.

The low temperature this morning is expected to be 31 degrees.

The National Weather Service in Jacksonville is forecasting highs in the 60s — and possibly low 70s on Tuesday — and nighttime lows in the 40s from today through Friday.

Some rain is also expected — a 60 percent chance on Monday followed by a 20 percent chance Tuesday through Wednesday.

"Look for a nice warm up for the next couple of days," said meteorologist Eric Zappe of the National Weather Service in Jacksonville.

"Right now the long-range models are forecasting a potential for a significant cooldown next weekend."

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