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Mark Anthony

Warm spring has been a surreal experience for state

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It was a surreal experience on Saturday. As temperatures hit the 70s and even the lower 80s around the state my wife and I saw people in shorts ice fishing on area lakes. That is not a sight you see everyday - even in Minnesota.

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On Sunday, International Falls, normally the nation's icebox, hit a record high of 79 degrees. That beat the old record of 73 degrees set-in 1910. That was the seventh consecutive record high for that city. They are also going for the most consecutive record temperatures, which is nine. More record high temperatures are likely across Minnesota for much of this week.

With the heat comes the threat of thunderstorms and even tornadoes. Michigan had a tornado that hit a community in that state last week, and more severe weather hit parts of the Midwest on Monday. It is very unusual for severe weather to start this early in the season this far north. Normally, we are dealing with state tournament time in Minnesota and the threat of blizzards - not tornadoes.

By the way, spring did officially arrive on Tuesday at 12:14 a.m. CDT. So now it won't seem as weird with record heat and thunderstorms since we have winter behind us. It was a strange winter - one for the record books. Last year it was one for the record book with record snowfall and this year it was one for the record books for record heat. The weather sure keeps us meteorologists on our toes!

Have a great rest of the week!

Weather history

In 1985 a warm front pushed across the state bringing record heat to the area. For example, Montevideo had a record high of 63 degrees and Park Rapids climbed to 53 degrees!

Weather fact

Each year, about a thousand tornadoes touch down in the United States, far more than any other country.

Minnesota at a glance

Moorhead: Low 40; High 62.

Duluth: Low 42; High 61.

Park Rapids: Low 41; High 63.

Twin Cities: Low 47; High 68.

Rochester: Low 44; High 66.

Marshall: Low 44; High 67.

Today

Partly cloudy and mild. High 63; Low 39. Winds: WSW 5-10 mph. Precipitation: None.

Today's sunrise: 7:22 a.m.

Today's sunset: 7:36 p.m.

Normal high: 38.

Normal low: 20.

More record heat is likely right into the weekend along with a chance of rain and thunderstorms by Friday.

Thursday

Increasing cloudiness, chance of showers mainly late. High 66; Low 52. Winds: ESE 10-15 mph. Precipitation: Trace - .25."

Friday

Becoming partly cloudy, chance of lingering rain early. High 70; Low 45. Winds: WNW 10-20 mph. Precipitation: Trace - .20."

Saturday

Partly cloudy and remaining mild. High 64; Low 44. Winds: E 5-10 mph. Precipitation: None.

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