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July 4th weekend weather: BBQs and fireworks expected to go off with a bang

Macy's Independence Day Fireworks from Hoboken, NJ, in

Macy's Independence Day Fireworks from Hoboken, NJ, in 2010. Photo Credit: Flickr/Jeff P.

Fire up the barbecue, and pack up that picnic, but you might want to have an umbrella on hand. Just in case.

As of Thursday, there was still a 20% to 30% risk that rain might blight regional July 4 barbeques.

"Overall, it's going to be dry: we may get through the entire weekend," said Tom Kines, senior meteorologist with, speaking about New York City and Long Island.

Showers are possible, though, throughout South Jersey and "the farther south you are [from NYC], the more likely it is you'll have to worry about rain," Kines said.

Conversely, those heading to Westchester, Connecticut, Vermont and other northern climes for their holidays can congratulate themselves, they're heading in the right direction if a dry July 4 is their goal.

Last year's Independence Day weekend was a wish-filled wash-out: 1.78 inches of rain fell July 3 and .14 inches descended in Central Park on July 4. But this year's fireworks should have better conditions and visibility.

Saturday should be about 4 degrees under the average high for July 4 (or 84 degrees), with Sunday creeping up into the low 80s.

"I don't think humidity will be a problem for us," Kines said. "Even on Sunday with the higher temperatures, it's not going to be unbearable."

And even if it does sprinkle this weekend, "it won't be an all-day rain," the meteorologist assured.

But don't expect the area's waters to hold with the outside temps -- swimming won't exactly boil you like a lobster. 

"The Long Island Sound temperature is close to 70 degrees right now," Kines said, adding that is about par for this time of year, but still -- kinda chilly. Given the desire of many New Yorkers to cleanse their memories of a particularly horrible and snowy winter, though, "I guarantee you there will be people in the water," he added.



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