Sarasota and Manatee residents may be in for the coldest night in four years this weekend, as a new cold front brings below-freezing temperatures to parts of South Florida.
National Weather Service Meteorologist Nicole Carlisle said a cold front will move into the Sarasota, Manatee and Tampa Bay area Friday, just in time to cool down outdoor events slated for this weekend like the Sarasota County Fire Fest and the Gasparilla Pirate Fest in Tampa.
Local temperatures mostly hovered above the high 50s this week, but the cold front will dip temperatures this weekend to the lowest since January 2018 – although Carlisle said it may not be enough to break the 30-degree mark measured back then.
Forecasters anticipate a high in the 50s and a steady drop in temperature to the low 30s on Saturday night and Sunday morning.
Other parts of South Florida may see even colder temperatures and have triggered a rare freeze outlook by the NWS Miami office.
“In January 2018, the Sarasota Bradenton airport measured 30 degrees,” Carlisle said. “It's not looking quite that cold. There shouldn't be any rain during the daytime hours on Saturday or Sunday, but especially on Saturday, it will be quite breezy, especially if you are near the water.”
She added that it should be warmer closer to shore where the Gulf of Mexico will bump temperatures up to the high 30s, compared to the lower 30s further inland, but winds may be gusty.
“The wind is going to be 15 or 20 miles per hour on Saturday; we will probably see higher gusts than that,” Carlisle said. “Saturday will be the coldest day overall, but Sunday will be the coldest morning.”
She said temperatures will begin to warm up on Monday and continue into next week.
This article originally appeared on Sarasota Herald-Tribune: Sarasota weather: Temperatures dropping to lowest since 2018