Wednesday will be the longest day of the year, literally, as the day before the official start of summer yields the most amount of sunshine.
Tampa Bay has already seen lots of sunshine, heat and humidity this year, and while that sunshine may be obscured by a few afternoon clouds, the eve of Summer Solstice promises to be another hot one.
Ranging normally from June 20-22, Wednesday marks the point when the sun’s zenith is at its furthest-most point from the equator. This elongates the daylight hours for most of the Northern Hemisphere.
For Tampa Bay, the cloud cover could bring a few scattered showers and isolated storms, according to the National Weather Service. A ridge of subtropical pressure system is pushing into Florida from the north, increasing atmospheric pressure and resulting in a higher chance of storms moving into the weekend.
The clouds also will keep temperatures just below 90, but with the humidity making it feel around 100, forecasters said. Rain chances will spike in the afternoon as the heat and humidity mixes with the coastal breeze. Expect a few pop-up showers and isolated thunderstorms across the region.
Thursday’s official start of summer at 6:07 a.m. will be marked by mostly sunny skies and lots of humidity. Highs will reach 89 with the chance of rain dropping to 20 percent.
This weekend is looking to be a bit wet, with rain chances increasing up to 40 percent threatening St. Petersburg Pride celebrations with a little bit of cloud cover.
The chance of rain is highest during the afternoon on Saturday and should settle back overnight. Temperatures over the weekend will continue in the upper 80s with high humidity driving up the heat index.