For the first time since the middle of August, severe weather will threaten parts of the central and northern Plains and the Upper Midwest.

Storms will erupt along the leading edge of advancing chilly air from the northern Rockies to end the week.

The first round of storms will occur over the eastern parts of the Dakotas and western and central Minnesota to central and northeastern Nebraska late Friday and Friday night.

"Initially, the storms will produce strong wind gusts and hail," according to AccuWeather Lead Storm Warning Meteorologist Eddie Walker.

"As the storms advance eastward and re-fire on Saturday and into Saturday night, they may bring the full spectrum of severe weather including hail, high winds, flash flooding and even a few isolated tornadoes," Walker said.

The storms from Saturday afternoon and evening will extend from eastern Minnesota and northwestern Wisconsin to eastern Nebraska, western and central Iowa to northeastern Kansas and northwestern Missouri.

Later Saturday night, storms may still pack a punch from part of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan to central Wisconsin and eastern Iowa.

In addition to affecting ground and air travel in the region, the storms may pose a risk to high school and college football games.

Motorists and anyone spending time outdoors should keep alert for changing weather conditions. Sudden, torrential downpours can lead to a rapid decrease in visibility and excess water on the roads. The greatest risk for people outdoors will be from lightning strikes.

Major cities that may be affected by the storms to end the week include Sioux Falls, South Dakota; Omaha, Nebraska; Minneapolis, Duluth and Rochester, Minnesota; Des Moines, Iowa; Topeka, Kansas; Kansas City, Missouri; and Eau Claire and La Crosse, Wisconsin.

Locally heavy, gusty thunderstorms may affect areas from the central Great Lakes to the middle Mississippi and Ohio valleys later this weekend into early next week.

The storms will mark an end to the late summer heat. However, after a spell of seasonable temperatures early next week, warmth will again build over much of the North Central states during the middle and latter part of next week.