The weather for the upcoming 4th of July holiday weekend won't be perfect for New Jersey, but it will be far from a washout.

One of the biggest weather forecasts of the year is upon us, as New Jersey prepares to celebrate America's birthday this weekend! From the beach to the boat to the backyard to the fireworks, the weather will impact everyone. And I'm pleased to say there's no need to dramatically change your plans for the weekend. However, there will be some clouds and some raindrops around, and temperatures will stay below seasonal normals. Here's a day-by-day breakdown of what to expect...

Thursday

A front has stalled just south of New Jersey. And, as we've seen a few times this summer so far, that front will provide a convenient "highway" for incoming impulses which look to impact New Jersey with some wet weather as they slide by.

Our forecast remains unsettled today, especially for South Jersey (closer to the stalled front = more likely to see rain). Everywhere south of Interstate 195 or so should be prepared for some raindrops through this afternoon. Nothing incredibly heavy or strong here, but a few embedded thunderstorms may produce a few brief downpours along with some thunder rumbles.

Aside from a lingering shower, tonight will be comfortable with scattered clouds. We could develop patchy fog by Friday morning, with low temperatures mostly in the 60s.

Friday

Friday is the uncertain day of this forecast, given a pretty big divergence in the models. The faithful NAM, usually very reliable in the short-term, painted a surprisingly wet picture from Friday afternoon through early Saturday morning (with periods of torrential rain in those overnight hours). The GFS model, meanwhile, just puts a few light showers in South Jersey on Friday, while keeping Friday night dry. I realize this is a critical forecast, since I'm sure there are a lot of barbecues and fireworks shows planned for Friday night to kickoff the 4th of July holiday.

Ultimately, I'm leaning heavily toward the dry forecast here. In either case, the chance of significant rain during the daytime hours on Friday will be low. Anything that does fall should stay rather light, as instability (available energy) looks to stay low as well. I've pegged Friday's high temperatures around or just shy of 80°, which is just below normal for early July (normal highs are 84° to 86° right now).

Saturday

Happy 4th of July!

Your Saturday forecast features some sun, some clouds, and yes, some showers. However, I'm calling them "isolated" showers - anything that forms and falls on Saturday will be localized, light, and short in duration. In other words, I truly believe a good portion of New Jersey will stay high and dry for Saturday. And if you are among the unlucky ones who experience some raindrops, they will not wash out the day. It will be a bit cooler for Saturday too, with highs mostly in the upper 70s.

The bottom line for the holiday... As I referenced already, the forecast for July 4th may not be picture-perfect, but it certainly won't be terrible either.

Sunday

And a happy 5th of July too!

I am confident in proclaiming Sunday as the weather winner of the holiday weekend. Skies will become mostly sunny, temperatures will soar into the summery mid 80s, and New Jersey will finally experience a completely dry day.

The Jersey Shore will be the place to be to close out the weekend, as temperatures at the beach will be slightly cooler and more comfortable. You'll find ocean temperatures in the nice, warm 70s now, along with gentle surf with waves at about 3 feet and a low to moderate risk for rip currents.

Monday

Whether you're heading back to work on Monday (like me) or extending your long weekend (lucky you), the stretch of pleasant, summer weather should continue. Models show sunshine and dry skies for Monday, and probably Tuesday and Wednesday too. Daily high temperatures will hover around normal in the mid 80s through the early part of next week.

Have a happy and safe holiday weekend! See you Monday!