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Now this feels like winter: Wind chills dip below zero for New Year's Eve


Happy New Year! Be sure to bundle up tonight.

WCCO's meteorologist Matt Brickman said it pretty well when he tweeted "It took until the last day of 2015, but winter has arrived," noting there's snow on the ground and wind chills are below zero.

At 6:45 a.m. Thursday, the National Weather Service tweeted the wind chill was -4 in the Twin Cities and -13 in New Ulm.

And it'll be a chilly night to ring in the new year.

Temperatures will fall into the teens in the Twin Cities, which is slightly below average for this time of year, AccuWeather notes, and wind chills are expected to dip below zero across much of the state by the time the clock strikes midnight, the weather service says.

This map shows what it'll feel like outside at 1 a.m. Friday:

But don't expect the chilly temps to stick around for long. Thursday is expected to be the coldest day of the holiday weekend, the National Weather Service says, and there are no subzero temperatures in sight, meteorologist Paul Douglas wrote on the Star Tribune's weather blog.

The weather will be pretty quiet across the state to kick off the new year – no major snowstorms are expected, and highs are forecast to be in the 20s Friday into next week, the weather service notes.

Douglas says we may even hit 30 degrees in the Twin Cities on Saturday, with MPR News' Updraft blog reporting there's a good chance for sun that day.

Record-breaking warmth this month

The continued mild temperatures come after an unusually warm December. FOX 9 meteorologist Cody Matz tweeted that this will be the warmest December since 1959 – and will be in the top five warmest since the 1870s.

Temperatures have averaged 11 degrees above normal in Minneapolis this month, AccuWeather says, however no record highs have been set.

The warm weather has delayed some winter fun – many lakes haven't seen their ice-in dates. In fact, Thursday is the latest ice-in date on record for Lake Calhoun and meteorologist Sven Sungaard says ice is starting to form on the Minneapolis lake. (For more on late ice-in dates, the Brainerd Dispatch took a look the dates for central Minnesota lakes earlier this month.)

The warm weather could also set a record in Duluth. The National Weather Service says the city may see its latest first subzero reading in a winter season.

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No wind chills this winter; Weather Service will keep 'extreme cold' warnings

The National Weather Service in the Dakotas and Minnesota says it's sticking with the "extreme cold" warnings that it tested last winter. Meteorologists say the winter weather can be dangerously cold even without wind. Forecasters will issue the warning when the temperature could feel like 30 below or colder.