UPDATE, 7 a.m. Thursday: Thursday morning's light drizzle was not expected to amount to much, said meteorologist Scott Dergan of the National Weather Service Office in Valley, Neb.
The showers were likely to quit by midmorning, he said. Dergan called for a 20 percent to 30 percent chance of more rain Thursday afternoon and tonight, with a high Thursday in the upper 80s.
Humid conditions should heat up even more Friday through the weekend, Dergan, with high temps near 95 degrees by Sunday.
A genuine feel of summer is likely through Labor Day weekend, despite a quick cool-down Thursday, when the high should reach the upper 80s..
The national Climate Prediction Center projects that nearly the entire U.S., including Nebraska and Iowa, is likely to see higher-than-average temperatures at least through the start of September.
Barbara Mayes, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service, said a weak cool front moving through the area today brings Omaha a chance for storms tonight. If the front leaves behind enough clouds on Thursday, then the sun will have a hard time heating things up and the day's high might not climb past a near-normal high of 84 degrees, she said.
Similar weak systems aren't in the near-term forecast – which means no immediate, real chance for another shot at rain or cool weather, she said
“We'll be lucky if we see this again in the next week,” she said.
The average high in Omaha this time of year is 84 degrees. By Friday, temperatures are forecast to be in the upper 80s and over the weekend, back in the low 90s.
How high temperatures climb as the warm-up takes hold isn't clear.
“Much warmer than normal” is likely, she said, but there's no early indication of triple-digit, record highs.
The warmth and lack of rain are due to an upper-level high pressure system that has become locked in place, Mayes said. In the big picture, the current weather pattern eliminates chances of eastern Nebraska and western Iowa emerging from drought.
This warm-up is in sharp contrast to the first half of the month. So far, August temperatures in Omaha have averaged more than 2 degrees below normal.