I'll let you read that headline again. Savor it. Let it soak in.

Yes, this looks like New Jersey's warmest weekend since September. I came to that conclusion via some back-of-the-envelope (i.e. unofficial) climatological calculations - looking at average Saturday-Sunday high temperatures over the last year at both Newark and Atlantic City. This weekend's forecast average high will be 72. It literally hasn't been that warm on a weekend since September 28-29. (The freakishly warm weekend in early January came close.)

However, this is not a perfect forecast. The warmth will combine with a few batches of rain, putting a slight damper on your (socially distant) outdoor fun and enjoyment.

As of this writing (5:30 a.m. Friday), the heavy rain and gusty winds are long gone, as our storm system moves farther from the coast. It's still a damp Friday morning though, with a combination of drizzle and showers, mist and fog. Conditions will improve, and I think you'll see some solid breaks of sunshine throughout Friday. High temperatures should reach the mid 60s, right on "normal" for the first day of May.

In addition, on the backside of Thursday's storm system, a few showers and thunderstorms are expected to pass through the state. Especially from mid to late afternoon (after about 2 p.m.) Given the warmth and humidity, and the advance of a weak cold front, there could be some lightning/thunder and localized downpours. I believe the risk for nasty severe weather Thursday is low.

We'll really start a drying trend after sunset Friday evening. A little breeze will kick up during the overnight. Low temperatures will fall into the seasonable upper 40s by Saturday morning.

I'm calling Saturday the "shining star" of the weekend, the nicer of the two days. Partly sunny skies will greet a fresh northwesterly breeze (10 to 20 mph). Temperatures will peak near 70 degrees — cool spots to the northwest and along the coast. (I love 70s, so I'm very excited about this forecast!)

Saturday daytime will be dry. A shower will be possible Saturday night.

Sunday will be the warmer day of the weekend. But it will also become the wetter, greyer day of the weekend. Skies will become mostly cloudy, with a few batches of spotty rain showers. The day won't be a total wash, but those raindrops may get in the way of your outdoor activities. My latest forecast puts high temperatures between 70 and 77 degrees. Nice and mild, at least! (And the drier it stays, the warmer it will get.)

Things will cool off slightly for Monday, with highs in the upper 60s. If you don't mind a stiff breeze (gusts over 20 mph), it looks like another pleasant, dry day with plenty of sunshine.

Even though "below-normal" temperatures resume by the middle of next week, we're probably still going to see some 60s each day. So, better than the soggy and cool weather of mid-late April. But not quite where we'd like to be in early-mid May.

Increasing clouds on Tuesday will eventually lead to a chance of rain at night. Highs will be limited to the lower to mid 60s.

Wednesday will probably be the coolest day of the week, with highs in the upper 50s to lower 60s. It will be cloudy and rainy too.

Thermometers should bump back into the 60s on Thursday, with a return of partial sunshine. We'll be watching some lingering showers for Thursday too.

Have yourself a fantastic weekend. Be safe, be responsible, be safe, and be healthy, my friends!

Dan Zarrow is Chief Meteorologist for Townsquare Media New Jersey. Follow him on Facebook or Twitter for the latest forecast and realtime weather updates.

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