Thanksgiving Weather Forecast: Thankful for Milder Weather

Read The Almanac's Forecast for Thanksgiving 2018!

By Chris Burnett, Old Farmer's Almanac Editorial Staff
November Leaves
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Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and that means it’s time for us to talk turkey about the weather. What conditions should you for expect for the big fall feast? Find out here!

As we inch closer and closer to winter, shorter days and colder nights are beginning to take hold across much of the country, with some areas already having seen their first snow of the season. Luckily, it looks like we may be in for a spell of milder temperatures just in time for Thanksgiving on Thursday, November 22.

An “Indian Summer?”

In terms of temperature, we’re predicting a milder-than-normal Thanksgiving everywhere except for Alaska, where cooler temperatures are expected. Granted, for most of the country, this won’t mean that you should break out the shorts and t-shirts—instead, consider reaching for a sweater rather than a winter jacket.

Does a spell of milder weather alone constitute a so-called “Indian summer?”

Technically, no: a true Indian summer must occur between November 11 (St. Martin’s Day) and November 20, though that’s not the only condition an autumnal warm spell has to satisfy in order to be labeled an Indian summer.

However, most people use the phrase to refer to any warm spell that occurs during mid- to late autumn, so in this sense of the term, what we expect to experience around Thanksgiving would qualify. Learn more about Indian summers here!

Rain, Rain, Go Away!

In addition to milder temperatures, we’re predicting a mix of rain and sun across the country.

Keep an umbrella on-hand if you plan to be on the East Coast for Thanksgiving, as scattered showers are expected all the way down the coast, from New England to Florida. The Lower Lakes, including Chicago and Detroit, should also prepare for some periods of rain around Thanksgiving, as should the Pacific Northwest, Intermountain region, Hawaii, much of New Mexico, and West Texas.

If you’re headed to the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City or the Lions–Bears game in Detroit, keep an eye on the forecast.

Elsewhere in the country, including in the Ohio Valley, Deep South, Upper Midwest, Texas-Oklahoma, Heartland, and Southwest, the sun is expected to shine for the holiday—good news for Thanksgiving Day football in Texas and Louisiana!

Luckily, the post-Thanksgiving weekend is shaping up to be a nice one across most of the country, with sunny skies in the forecast from Black Friday to Cyber Monday.

Click here for a map of US weather regions and more of our long-range forecasts.

Get Ready for Thanksgiving

Do you have everything planned and prepped for the big feast? Don’t worry, there’s still time! Check out some of our favorite recipes below:

Also see our main Thanksgiving page for some holiday history, poetry, and folklore.

As we alluded to above, winter is just around the corner! Prepare for the season ahead by picking up your copy of The 2019 Old Farmer’s Almanac today.

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Thanksgiving Weather

We're expecting below zero wind chill on Thanksgiving in Upstate CNY!
The warmth of family enjoying turkey dinner will help our hunters thaw out.

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It fine to given weather forecast thanks information