Fayette County

July Fourth likely to be soggy, stormy with chance of flooding

A crowd turned out for the parade during Lexington's Fourth of July festival in 2012.
A crowd turned out for the parade during Lexington's Fourth of July festival in 2012. Herald-Leader

The forecast is for a rather soggy day Thursday, but organizers say Lexington's Fourth of July Festival will go as planned, rain or shine.

Renee Jackson, president of the Downtown Lexington Corp., said officials "will obviously postpone or cancel certain activities throughout the day if weather becomes threatening."

Some cities throughout the state, such as Morehead and Williamsburg, have postponed their events. Similar delays had not happened in Central Kentucky as of Wednesday night.

Jackson said the Downtown Lexington Corp. "encourages everyone to use their judgment" when deciding whether to attend the festival.

Jackson said Zambelli Fireworks will decide whether to postpone or delay the fireworks display scheduled for 10 p.m. Thursday. If it's cancelled, a rain date is scheduled for 10 p.m. Friday.

WKYT chief meteorologist Chris Bailey said he expects "a scattering of showers and thunderstorms" on Thursday. With more rain and storms expected, the chance of flooding will increase, Bailey said.

The National Weather Service issued a flash-flood watch for Lexington, Central Kentucky and Eastern Kentucky from 8 p.m. Wednesday through 8 a.m. Friday. Areas of Northern and Southern Kentucky also were included in the watch.

Thursday's forecast

Morning: Scattered showers and thunderstorms. High: 70

Afternoon: Showers and thunderstorms likely with locally heavy rain. High: 75

Evening: Showers and storms, some with heavy rain. High: 69

Bailey's thoughts

Waves of rain and storms will lift northward across the region. Tropical moisture from the Gulf of Mexico will work into the state and give us the potential for torrential rain. Flash flooding is a possibility for areas getting the heaviest rainfall.

Past Fourths

Since 1900, Lexington has recorded at least a trace of rain on 53 days.

The wettest Fourth of July was in 1935, when 1.83 inches of rain fell.

Only seven times has an inch or more of rain been recorded on the Fourth in Lexington.

The last Fourth of July to feature more than an inch of rain was in 2007, when an early-evening thunderstorm dropped 1.32 inches.

The hottest Fourth was last year, when the thermometer hit 99 degrees.

The rest of the weekend

Showers and storms are likely all weekend. This could lead to additional danger of high water. Highs will be in the upper 70s and low 80s. Lows will be in the 60s.

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