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Rain, storms on tap for much of Minnesota this weekend

Southern Minnesota, including the Twin Cities, could see severe weather Saturday.

Here comes the much-needed rain, along with the possibility for a few severe storms. 

A warm front will lift northward into Minnesota Friday, bringing a wet weather system into the drought-stricken state for the weekend. Much of the state will see periods of rain, sometimes heavy downpours, with some areas of southern Minnesota picking up more than an inch of rain.

But it won't be a complete washout — there will be periods of dry throughout the weekend, likely during the day Saturday and Sunday. 

The stretch of wet weather begins Friday night when rain and possibly thunderstorms move into southwestern Minnesota. They'll build east toward the Twin Cities, arriving around sunrise Saturday, the National Weather Service (NWS) in the Twin Cities said in its noon Friday update. 

"Given the elevated nature of this activity, hail would be the main severe threat [overnight Friday into Saturday], but we don't look to have sufficient instability or shear to support much of an elevated hail threat," NWS said. 

The potential for some severe weather is greater Saturday night into Sunday for the southern half of Minnesota, with rain and non-severe thunderstorms in the forecast for the northern half of the state, NWS says

In the southern part of the state, including the Twin Cities, storms could quickly cluster up, with heavy rain and strong winds being the main threat as storms move east during the evening hours Saturday. There is potential for large hail and tornadoes. 

This prompted the Storm Prediction Center to include a "slight risk" of severe weather in its day two outlook for southern Minnesota, including the Twin Cities. Though NWS says there's "still a good deal of uncertainty on how convection will evolve in this period."

NWS says a low-level jet over southern Minnesota Saturday night into Sunday could bring isolated rainfall totals of more than 2 inches over southeastern Minnesota into central Wisconsin.

The chance for heavy rain and thunderstorms continues on Sunday for much of the majority of the state. Far southeastern Minnesota has the best chance of seeing severe weather, with the Storm Prediction Center showing a marginal risk of isolated severe storms, which could include heavy rain and the possibility of flash flooding.

Here's what the NWS says about that: 

"How activity Saturday night/Sunday morning evolves will determine if we can build enough instability to drive another severe threat Sunday. However, mid-upper level winds look to be light again, which will limit deep shear.

"Pwats will be pushing 2 inches as well, so we should see some heavy downpours, but not expecting much of an excessive rain threat, with storms expected to be fairly progressive and limited training possible."

By Sunday night, the NWS says the Twin Cities could see rainfall amounts between a half-inch to more than an inch.

Things are expected to dry out a bit on Monday and Tuesday, with high temperatures in the 90s for southern Minnesota. The next chance for some rain comes Tuesday night and Wednesday, NWS says. 

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