Warmest Christmas Eve on record to unfold across eastern US

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Your Odds of Getting a White Christmas

By ACCUWEATHER

Any hopes of a white Christmas that the weekend chill brought will be dashed in the eastern United States, with this Christmas Eve shaping up to be the warmest on record in many communities.

"There is a high probability for record-setting warmth up and down the entire Eastern Seaboard from Florida to Maine [on Christmas Eve]," AccuWeather Meteorologist Rob Englund said.

As the jet stream builds back northward, unseasonable warmth will return this Christmas week and replace the more typical December chill from the weekend.

The jet stream is a strong river of air high in the atmosphere that guides weather systems and separates warm air to the south from cold air to the north.



Christmas Eve will feel more like an early autumn or spring day with highs ranging from the 50s in Maine to the 70s in the mid-Atlantic and the lower 80s in parts of the Southeast. That equates to highs that are 15 to 30 degrees Fahrenheit above normal.

Widespread record highs will not only be challenged but shattered in many towns and cities. The potential exists for records to be topped by more than 5 degrees from Atlanta to Washington, D.C., to Philadelphia to New York City and to Burlington, Vermont.



Philadelphia's all-time December record high of 73 F, set on two days in 1998, will be in jeopardy.

"It appears high temperatures will be close to 70 F on Christmas Eve in New York City, which is about 30 degrees above normal for the date," AccuWeather Meteorologist Bill Deger said. "It was also unusually warm last Christmas Eve in 2014, when Central Park reached 58 F for a high."

A surge of higher dewpoints will arrive with the warmth, making Christmas Eve actually feel humid by December standards along the I-95 corridor.

Along with erasing any hopes for a white Christmas, the warmth will mean residents can leave the heavy winter jackets, hats or mittens at home when heading out for last minute shopping or to Christmas Eve services.

The only chance of a white Christmas will be in the Tug Hill region of New York state, east of Lake Ontario, and northern Maine.

See photos of snowy weather this year:

21 PHOTOS
Snow, winter weather 2015-2016 season across the U.S.
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Warmest Christmas Eve on record to unfold across eastern US
LUBBOCK, TEXAS - DECEMBER 27: A highway worker tries to shield himself while walking to his truck on December 27, 2015 in Lubbock, Texas. Coming on the heels of several strong tornadoes, some northern parts of Texas are experiencing blizzard conditions with wind gusts up to 50 mph and as much as 13 inches of snow forecast. (Photo by John Weast/Getty Images)
NEDERLAND, CO - DECEMBER 15: Steve Hauser plows snow in the Caribou Shopping Center in Nederland, Colorado on December 15, 2015. Snow is expected to continue throughout the day. (Photo by Helen H. Richardson/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
NEDERLAND, CO - DECEMBER 15: A yellow lab waits patiently in his owner's snowy old truck along East 1st Street in Nederland, Colorado on December 15, 2015. Snow is expected to continue throughout the day. The dog looked warm and didn't wait long in the car as his owner returned shortly after an errand in the town. (Photo by Helen H. Richardson/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - DEC. 15: Anna Renton, 7, right, relaxes while neighbor Graham Langner, 7, has a snow fight with his nanny, Ashely Kish.The Denver metro area received more snow than expected overnight, closing schools across the city with some areas measuring a foot of snow by the early morning. (Photo by Kathryn Scott Osler/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
LAKEWOOD, CO - DECEMBER 15: Crut Liles clears snow from his walkways outside his home in Lakewood, December, 15, 2015. Many schools in the area are closed due to the snow storm. (Photo by RJ Sangosti/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - DEC. 15: A CDOT crew runs their plow truck southbound on Colorado Blvd. near E. 13th Ave. in Denver. The Denver metro area received more snow than expected overnight, closing schools across the city with some areas measuring a foot of snow by the early morning. (Photo by Kathryn Scott Osler/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
Al Frelk walks his dog, Shiba, 10, in Lords Park in Elgin, Ill., on Saturday, Nov. 21, 2015. Asked about the snow, Frelk said, 'It's beautiful, but can be tough to drive in. Though Shiba has been waiting 9 months for this.' The first winter storm of the season dropped more than 10 inches of snow at numerous Chicagoland locations. (Stacey Wescott/Chicago Tribune/TNS via Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - NOVEMBER 17: Snow hit the Denver metro area having an impact on air travel at Denver International Airport. They were clearing out from the snow on Tuesday, November 17, 2015. Raul Hernandez shovels snow in the economy lot. Hernandez and his crew had worked all night to clear snow. (Photo by Cyrus McCrimmon/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
LAKEWOOD, CO - NOVEMBER 11: Brandon Nelli, a student at Colorado Christian University in Lakewood, shovels snow during a Veteran's Day snow storm the moved into the area overnight, November, 11, 2015. Lakewood got almost 3 inches in some areas form the storm. (Photo by RJ Sangosti/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - NOVEMBER 11: A blanket of white snow covers Fort Logan National Cemetery during a Veteran's Day snow storm the moved into the area overnight, November, 11, 2015. (Photo by RJ Sangosti/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
MONUMENT, CO. - November 17: Bob Swift clearing his driveway of a deep drift of snow in Monument, CO. November 17, 2015 Monument, CO (Photo By Joe Amon/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
An above-average amount of snow covers a small cabin near where the first snow survey of winter conducted by the California Department of Water Resources in Phillips, California December 30, 2015. REUTERS/Fred Greaves
Cameron Shonnard backflips a jump at Squaw Valley in Olympic Valley, California, December 5, 2015. An El Nino is forecasted for California, and regular precipitation has been welcomed after years of drought. REUTERS/Max Whittaker TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Fresh snow clings to trees near Big Bend, California, December 4, 2015. An El Nino is forecasted for California, and regular precipitation has been welcomed after years of drought. Picture taken December 4. REUTERS/Max Whittaker
The U.S. Capitol dome can be seen behind piles of snow removed from parking areas and walkways around the Capitol grounds in Washington January 26, 2016. The snowbound Washington area was resuming partial business on Tuesday as trains and buses restarted near-normal service, while federal offices remained closed following a massive blizzard that hammered the U.S. East Coast. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Floodwaters cover Green Avenue after a winter storm in Manasquan, New Jersey, January 24, 2016. A morning high tide surge of 2 feet followed snowfall of about 2 feet in the first major storm of the season. REUTERS/Dominick Reuter
A couple poses for a photo on a snow pile during a snow storm in Times Square in the Manhattan borough of New York, January 23, 2016. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
WASHINGTON, DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, UNITED STATES - 2016/02/15: Snow is once again falling across Washington, D.C on Monday, 15 February 2016. The bitter cold was replaced by snow, sleet and rain Monday in the mid-Atlantic states and the South, but many residents were able to hunker down at home with federal offices and many businesses closed for Washington's Birthday. (Photo by Probal Rashid/LightRocket via Getty Images)
A barn painted with the U.S. flag is seen in the snow covered field in Kanawha, Iowa, United States, January 16, 2016. Iowa will be the first state to hold its primary, with both Democratic and Republican events being held February 1, 2016. Picture taken January 16, 2016. REUTERS/Jim Young
Police officers gather outside the Montgomery County Courthouse, where actor and comedian Bill Cosby will arrive for a preliminary hearing on sexual assault charges, in Norristown, Pennsylvania February 2, 2016. Cosby has been charged with the 2004 sexual assault of Andrea Constand, a former women's basketball team manager at Temple University in Philadelphia, Cosby's alma mater. REUTERS/Mark Makela REUTERS/Mark Makela
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The warmth will come despite some clouds and a couple of showers in the area. Those wanting to take advantage of the warmth by caroling, taking a walk, firing up the grill or engaging in any other outdoor activity should plan to keep an umbrella handy.

The passage of a cold front will ease the extreme warmth in the Northeast for Christmas Day, but temperatures will still be well above normal for the holiday. In the Southeast, Friday will likely be a repeat of Thursday.

According to AccuWeather Meteorologist Ed Vallee, the return of persistent cold will not be the theme for the remainder of 2015.

"The extreme warmth of late will certainly be muted after Christmas Day, but above average temperatures continuing through the end of the month will set the stage for December monthly temperature records to be broken in some areas of the East," he said.

More from AccuWeather:
Snow to grind Christmas travel to a halt in western US; Rain to cause delays in eastern US
Brushfire looms ominously over buildings near Perth, Australia
Southern US storms to raise flood, severe weather threat into Christmas Eve

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