This isn't an April Fools' joke: Wednesday is the warmest day we've seen since late September. The temperature hit 83 degrees at the Minneapolis-St. Paul airport Wednesday afternoon, breaking the record high for April 1 which was 82 degrees, set back in 1882.
We usually don't see 80-degree temps until May, according to KSTP meteorologist Jonathan Yuhas.
Much of Minnesota was expected to get into the 70s and toward 80, with the warmest readings in south-central Minnesota.
The average high this time of year is the upper 40s, AccuWeather notes.
The winds are also quite strong across the region, signaling a significant change the weather by Wednesday night.
Storms – some severe – this evening
As temperatures surge Wednesday afternoon, thunderstorms will start to develop ahead of a cold front, according to MPR News' Updraft blog.
Rainfall could total more than a half-inch with strong (possibly severe) storms in southwestern Minnesota, the news station notes.
The NOAA storm prediction center has placed a marginal risk of severe weather in the Twin Cities, with a slight risk in southern Minnesota. The main threats of this storm are strong winds and large hail, the National Weather Service says.
Strong southerly winds with sustained speeds of 35-40 mph are possible, with gusts reaching up to 50 mph, the weather service says.
Before the rain comes, these winds will increase the risk of fire in southern Minnesota, which is under a red flag warning.