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Weekend forecast: Scattered downpours across Va. on Juneteenth, drier and hotter by Father's Day

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A kayaker paddled into the rapids of the swollen James River on May 22 after heavy rains upstream caused the river to reach flood stage. This weekend, runoff from mountain downpours could push the James River close to minor flood stage again.

After a spell of unusually soggy and cool weather across Virginia, things will gradually turn more favorable for spending time outside as this holiday weekend goes on.

But the rain isn’t done with us yet.

Despite warmer temperatures and more glimpses of sun, look out for the typical pop-up showers or storms of early summer. Mornings have a better chance of staying dry.

Widespread or organized severe weather is unlikely over the next few days, but downpours may renew flash flooding issues in parts of the state that recently experienced heavy rain.

So it’s trending drier by Sunday, but not totally dry, and warmer but not downright hot. (Not yet: 90s are on the way back next week.)

Here’s a day-by-day breakdown.

Friday — Juneteenth

  • Richmond: Expect some scattered downpours around the area between midday and early evening, though it wouldn’t be a constant rain during that time. Otherwise, it looks partly cloudy with highs in the lower 80s and a detectable increase in the mugginess.
  • Statewide: Scattered thundershowers are possible in every region, with chances peaking in the afternoon. Highs in the lower 80s are in store across central and eastern portions, with 70s from the western Piedmont into the mountains.

Saturday

(The summer solstice occurs at 5:44 p.m. Richmond enjoys 14 hours and 45 minutes of sunlight on the longest day of the year.)

  • Richmond: Expect lower 80s for the afternoon, though it could swing a few degrees higher or lower depending on cloudiness and rain. Once again, we’re more likely than not to see passing showers and storms with the heat of the day, and a mix of clouds and sun the rest of the time.
  • Statewide: Hit-or-miss storms will continue, with lower to mid-80s for the Piedmont and Tidewater regions. Expect upper 70s to lower 80s in the mountains.

Sunday — Father’s Day

  • Richmond: This looks to be the warmest and driest day of the weekend, with mid-80s by afternoon and possibly upper 80s. That would be back to normal for this time of year. The chance for a brief downpour is lower, but not zero, and there should be plenty of sun otherwise.
  • Statewide: Showers and storms will be more isolated in nature, with seasonably hotter mid- to upper 80s for most areas and 70s continuing in the higher elevations.

James River

The stage at Richmond’s Westham gauge passed 6 feet on Thursday, but the National Weather Service predicts a rise to 11.9 feet by early Saturday, just shy of the 12-foot minor flood threshold. Most projections have it down to about 9 feet by Sunday, with a slow ebb during the next workweek.

Rip currents

NWS Wakefield also cautions that Virginia Beach to Corolla, N.C., stands a moderate rip current risk on Friday. Be sure to bookmark weather.gov/beach/akq for up-to-date beach hazards this summer.

Check Richmond.com/weather for John Boyer’s forecast updates. Contact him at JBoyer@timesdispatch.com.

Meteorologist

John Boyer is the first staff meteorologist for the Richmond Times-Dispatch. He joined the RTD newsroom in November 2016. Boyer earned his degree in meteorology from North Carolina State University in Raleigh.

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John Boyer

John Boyer, the RTD's staff meteorologist

John Boyer is the first staff meteorologist for the Richmond Times-Dispatch. He joined the RTD newsroom in November 2016 after covering severe weather on television in Tulsa, Okla.

As a native of the Roanoke area, the region’s heavy snowstorms started his fascination with Virginia’s changing weather.

Boyer earned his degree in meteorology from North Carolina State University in Raleigh. He is a member of the American Meteorological Society and earned their Certified Broadcast Meteorologist seal in 2012.

Look for his stories in the RTD and on Richmond.com, along with videos and forecast updates for major weather events in our area.

Email him your story ideas and weather tips.

Thursday Weatherline

No rain for some; 4½ inches for others

Wednesday afternoon’s storms left variable rainfall across the metro area. In Hanover County, Beaverdam stayed dry while up to 4½ inches fell near Rockville and flooded roads. Meanwhile, Richmond saw nearly 1 inch. Reports of wind damage were very isolated.

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