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story.lead_photo.caption Arkansas Democrat-Gazette/STATON BREIDENTHAL --2/7/19-- A pedestrian walks to the parking deck as rain falls Thursday on the University of Arkansas Little Rock campus. ( Arkansas Democrat-Gazette / Staton Breidenthal)

Arkansans planning to spend Thanksgiving in the Natural State should prepare to stay indoors much of the holiday weekend, as rain fills the forecast for most of the next six days.

Rain chances start Monday night, National Weather Service meteorologist Travis Shelton said, and will increase overnight, hitting 35-55% statewide by sunrise Tuesday.

The chance for rain will continue to increase Tuesday for central and southern areas, and thunderstorms are possible. An advisory from the weather service said the storms may bring severe high winds and even a chance for an isolated tornado or two. The risk is greater in the eastern half of the state.

Shelton said the system will move out of the state by Wednesday morning.

Most areas statewide will see a total of less than half an inch by then.

Drivers hitting the road Wednesday are in luck — it is only the day predicted to be rain-free this week. It will be chilly, though, with lows in the mid-30s to mid-40s statewide in the morning and highs in the upper 40s for northern areas and mid-50s in central areas.

A wetter storm system will move into the state overnight into Thursday, Shelton said. The state can expect high chances of rain Thanksgiving Day as well as chances for isolated thunderstorms and flash flooding until the storm system leaves Sunday.

Temperatures on Thanksgiving will stay in the 40s most of the day across the state, Shelton said.

Friday will also be rainy, though temperatures are expected to get into the upper 50s and low 60s statewide. Saturday will continue this trend, remaining rainy as temperatures continue to rise, into the low 60s in the north and upper 60s in central Arkansas.

By the time this storm system leaves overnight Saturday into Sunday morning, Shelton said, it will have dropped up to 4 inches of rain in central and northern areas and up to 2 and a half inches in southern areas.

Sunday will offer a slight reprieve for Arkansans, with clear skies, but temperatures will decrease, down to the 30s and 40s in the north and 40s and 50s in central areas.

Shelton said temperatures are not expected to get below freezing this week, eliminating the possibility of wintry precipitation, but temperatures may dip that low next Monday.


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