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Atlanta: Rain, Flooding Risk for Peachtree Race, Fireworks

A wet weather pattern and a risk of flooding are building into the region just in time for Atlanta's Fourth of July festivities.

A plume of moisture surging northward from the Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean will bring widespread tropical downpours across a large part of the South through and beyond the Fourth of July.

The relentless rain will have implications on the popular Peachtree Road Race, which draws 60,000 amateur and professional runners annually, and the Fireworks Spectacular at Centennial Olympic Park as both events take place rain or shine.

Runners may have to contend with rounds of heavy rain Thursday. The rain could lead to dangerous flash flooding of low-lying and poor drainage areas throughout the city, suburbs and surrounding countryside.

The prognosis for the 9:40 p.m. fireworks display is slightly better. Showers and thunderstorms will become spottier as evening turns into night. There is also a chance that the heavy rain will focus on areas to the west, rather than right over the city. However, a downpour cannot be ruled out during the display.

Fog could be an issue due to expected light winds and high humidity, especially if a shower were to occur around sunset.

Depending on exactly where the channel of heavy rain and gusty thunderstorms sets up, there could be significant travel delays, especially at Atlanta's Hartsfield Airport.

Those looking to enjoy a stroll at Piedmont Park this weekend will have to dodge additional showers and thunderstorms.

The latest deluge of rain is coming after one of the wettest Junes on record when Atlanta received 9.57 inches of rain, or 242 percent of its normal rainfall.

Current indications are the rain will begin to ease early next week.

Story written by AccuWeather.com Meteorologist Ben Noll