First Northern Lights Display of 2014 for US Peaks Thursday

The first northern lights display of 2014 is on tap for the United States Wednesday night into Thursday morning.

A strong, Earth-facing coronal mass ejection, or CME, occurred Tuesday which set the stage for a bright display across the northern half of the U.S., according to Expert Meteorologist Mark Paquette.

The more directly a flare faces the Earth, the better the chances are for a strong aurora to be visible.

While the show is expected to be a strong one, cloud cover could put a damper on the visibility for some.

The Northeast should provide mostly clear skies throughout the event.

"Anyone in the suburbs of Boston, New York City, Baltimore, Washington, D.C., or Philadelphia has a chance at seeing this," Paquette said.

Residents of the Midwest and northern Plains states will also see good conditions.

Cloudy skies are most threatening for those in the West, including the suburbs of Seattle, Portland, Ore., and Boise, Idaho.

Skygazers will also struggle to see through the clouds from northern Kansas to far western Pennsylvania.

Despite visibility issues, the weather is in favor of those hoping to get outside, as dangerously low temperatures are finally retreating from the Plains to the Northeast.