Punxsutawney Phil emerged from his perch in Pennsylvania and has just delivered his eagerly awaited Groundhog Day prediction.
On a crisp, clear day in Gobblers Knob, Pennsylvania, the charismatic critter saw his shadow, signaling that the next six weeks will bring wintry weather.
If timing is everything, Phil's call comes just as a dangerously cold air mass that will lead to a dramatic drop in temperatures is about to arrive.
The Arctic blast will settle over the region Friday, Feb. 3, and Saturday, Feb. 5.
"Wind-chill values during this time may fall to as low as 10 to 20 below zero for coastal locations, and 25 below in the interior," the National Weather Service said in a Hazardous Weather Statement issued Thursday morning, Feb. 2.
Though the surge of cold air will be intense, it won't last long.
"A shift of the polar vortex will be at the heart of the brief cold blast in the Northeast," according to AccuWeather Chief On-Air Meteorologist Bernie Rayno.
Thursday will be clear and cold with a high temperature in the mid to upper 30s, and wind-chill values again in the 20s.
The big temperature drop will happen during the day Friday. Temps will start off in the mid 20s in the morning before dropping to the teens by the late afternoon.
Friday will be blustery with strong winds, and gusts as high as 35 miles per hour.
The overnight low temperature Friday night into Saturday morning will drop to around the zero mark.
The high temperature Saturday will be in the low 20s under sunny skies.
The overnight low temp Saturday into Sunday, Feb. 4 will be in the teens as clouds increase.
Temps will rebound during the day on Sunday, with a high temperature climbing to the low 40s with mostly cloudy skies.
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