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Tampa Bay poised for rainy weather, possible thunderstorms starting Friday

Despite expected showers, the National Weather Service says there is only a slight risk of thunderstorms each day.
Clouds are seen over St. Petersburg. There is a 70 percent chance of rain today, a 60 percent chance tomorrow and a 50 percent chance Sunday, according to Spectrum Bay News 9.
Clouds are seen over St. Petersburg. There is a 70 percent chance of rain today, a 60 percent chance tomorrow and a 50 percent chance Sunday, according to Spectrum Bay News 9. [ MARTIN FROBISHER | Times ]
Published May 18|Updated May 20

Though we haven’t reached peak rainy season in Tampa Bay, this weekend will feel like we’re in the heart of July.

The region has an 70 percent chance of rain Friday, a 60 percent chance Saturday and a 50 percent chance Sunday, according to Spectrum Bay News 9. The rain will be accompanied by temperatures in the high 80s and low 90s each day and lows in the mid-70s.

Meteorologists at the National Weather Service in Ruskin say there is also a slight chance of thunderstorms each day.

The first significant showers will occur Friday, the weather service says.

The rain will slow down by Sunday evening, though there will still be a 40 percent chance of showers Monday, according to Spectrum Bay News 9.

With this weekend’s forecast, some people in the Tampa Bay area may be wondering: Have we reached the time of year where showers can be expected each afternoon?

Related: Rainy season is coming, Tampa Bay. Here’s the official start date

Not quite, says the National Weather Service. The agency established last year that the region’s rainy season officially runs from May 25 to Oct. 10 — 10 days behind Southwest Florida’s start date of May 15.

Just like how storms form before the June 1 start of hurricane season, however, these “rainy season” dates are arbitrary. The dates were determined using data dating back to 1981 that compares daily averages to predict when the rain is most likely to come in droves.

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