Houston weather: Prepare to get wet on way to Minute Maid Park for Game 1 of World Series

Houston’s forecast for Friday calls for rain and thunderstorms, with the most severe weather expected during the late afternoon and early evening.

Downtown Houston Rain
Gail Delaughter
The Houston skyline disappears in the mist near Buffalo Bayou.

Are you planning to attend Game 1 of the World Series on Friday night?

If so, it would be wise to bring an umbrella as well as a windbreaker or light jacket. And if you're driving downtown, watch out for wet roads and try to park as close as possible to Minute Maid Park.

A cold front is expected to move through Houston on Friday and will bring rainfall to most of the region, along with the potential for high winds and severe thunderstorms. The chance for nasty weather will be greatest during the late afternoon and early evening, according to Jimmy Fowler, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service's Houston/Galveston office.

Fowler said there's a "pretty good chance" fans will get rained on as they make their way to the ballpark for the 7:03 p.m. series opener between the Houston Astros and Philadelphia Phillies.

"The majority of the storms will be just light to moderate rainfall," he said. "However, there will be some isolated stronger and potentially severe storms around the area."

Houston's forecast for Friday calls for a high temperature of 72 degrees, a low of 58, a 90 percent chance for precipitation during the day and an 80 percent chance at night. Most of the area will see up to 1 inch of rainfall, Fowler said, with up to 2 inches in isolated areas.

An easterly wind between 10-15 mph is expected during the early part of the day, when Fowler said there will be isolated and scattered showers and thunderstorms. Once the low-pressure front moves in during the afternoon, Fowler said winds will come out of the west or northwest and could become gustier, potentially approaching 60 mph or more if severe storms materialize.

The southwest part of the Houston region, including the Fort Bend County area, has the highest chance of severe weather, according to Fowler, who said strong storms could emerge over the city as well. Power outages are possible, he said, and the local National Weather Service office said in a Thursday afternoon news release that "a few isolated tornadoes and hail cannot be ruled out either."

"When that line of showers and thunderstorms moves through, pretty much everyone will have a shot at that rainfall," Fowler said. "If you're driving through the city, you could see some localized street ponding or minor flooding if one of those stronger storms ends up popping up throughout the city. Make sure you don't drive on any flooded roadways."

Temperatures are expected to stay in the high 60s during most of the daylight hours on Friday, hitting the low 70s in the late afternoon and early evening.

The cold front is expected to pass through the Houston area and toward Louisiana late Friday night, between 10 p.m. and midnight, according to Fowler, who said the "severe weather threat diminishes rapidly" after that point. But, he said, fans may still see some rainfall as they're leaving the game, which likely will last at least three hours.

Fortunately for the Astros, their fans and baseball followers from all over the country and the world, Minute Maid Park has a retractable roof.

"We don't make that call," Fowler said. "Most likely, that roof will be closed."

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