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July Fourth Forecast: Sunny for Much of US, Rain in East

While the weather over the coastal Northeast will be dependent on the track of a tropical system, much of the nation will be sunny on July Fourth.

There will be a risk of showers and thunderstorms for at least part of Independence Day activities from eastern North Carolina up to New England as a front moves slowly eastward and a tropical system moves along nearby. The tropical system is likely to spoil a day at the beach in these areas due to the risk of downpours and rough surf.

As long as the tropical system does not stall, clearing is likely from west to east in coastal areas of the Northeast Friday night, perhaps just in time for firework shows from Washington, D.C., to Philadelphia, and New York City.

Around Boston and southeastern New England, rain is likely to last well into Friday night.

Farther west and south, most areas from the Midwest and southern Atlantic Seaboard to the Pacific coast will be dry and clear on Independence Day.

There will be very widely separated thunderstorms popping up in the Deep South, Texas and the Rockies during the afternoon and early evening hours on Friday. A few storms may push eastward across the northern Plains Friday night.

The best weather for outdoor activities ranging from picnics to 5k's and firework viewings will stretch from the interior Northeast to the Great Lakes and the Ohio Valley, where humidity levels will be low. High temperatures will range from the 70s around Detroit, Chicago and Pittsburgh to the lower 80s in Cincinnati and St. Louis.

Very dry brush and drought conditions may curtail some firework displays in the Southwest. Most areas from Idaho and Utah to Washington state, Oregon, Nevada and California will be free of rain. Typical heat for the Fourth of July is in store for the interior Southwest.

However, it will also get as hot as a firecracker in portions of Idaho, northern Nevada and Utah, where temperatures will swing to the middle to upper 90s F, which is about 10 degrees above average.