73 Degrees Sunday,
71 On Saturday
Set New Marks, But
It's Getting Colder
BY O.J. EARLY
It probably took a glance at the calendar this weekend to be sure that it was still January.
Single-day heat records were broken over the weekend, confirmed Andrew Pritchett, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Morristown.
The weekend's roll-down-the-windows-and-dig-out-the-shorts weather prompted many to take advantage of the unseasonably warm temperatures.
The spring-like weather will soon be replaced, however, with more normal January temperatures -- and, in the meantime, lots of rain.
In fact, the National Weather Service has issued a flood watch that remains in effect from today through Wednesday morning.
OUT AND ABOUT
The weekend's weather had many local citizens out and about.
The Greeneville Skating Park, the Laughlin Memorial Hospital Walking Trail and Hardin Park were among places filled with people enjoying the spring-like conditions.
Walkers could be spotted along Greeneville's streets at various locations throughout the day on Sunday.
Jim Vales and his wife were walking on the Laughlin trail about 2:30 p.m. on Sunday.
"I come out here almost every day," Vales said. "But it's especially nice on a day like this with the pretty weather."
West Greene High School student Aaron Farris was also among those taking advantage of the 70-degree weather.
"The weather was great," said Farris, who joined about a dozen others for a game of Ultimate Frisbee at Terry Bellamy Soccer Complex Sunday afternoon.
"It's not usual to get days like this in January. We just couldn't pass up an opportunity to play Frisbee," he said.
The weekend's unusual weather set two new temperature records, Pritchett said.
Saturday's high of 71 replaced the 2005 record of 69 for Jan. 12, and Sunday's high of 73 topped a more-than-four-decade-old record of 72, set in 1972.
But, starting today, Greene County residents should expect a return to more January-like conditions.
"Looks like it is going to be wet with cooler temperatures," Pritchett said. "But compared to some of the really cold weather we had to start off the year, it is going to be mild."
A flood watch was issued for Greene County and other parts of East Tennessee on Monday. The watch expires at 7 a.m. Wednesday.
"We are expecting some heavy rainfall in the next few days," Pritchett said. "It's not going to happen all at once. It's just going to accumulate over the next two days or so."
Some areas across the region, including Greene County, could see two or three inches of rain by Wednesday morning, the meteorologist said. Low-lying areas have the potential to flood.