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The National Weather Service predicts a chance of severe thunderstorms after 4 p.m. on Thursday.

Showers and a few thunderstorms will be possible Wednesday morning with an uptick in storm intensity during the afternoon as the cold front pushes across South Central Missouri and North Central Arkansas.

The storms will give way to showers late Thursday night, and the forecast for Friday calls for sunny skies and high temperatures in the mid-70s.

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Counties now under a tornado watch through 5 p.m. include: Bowie, Camp, Cass, Gregg, Harrison, Marion, Morris, Panola, Rusk, Smith, Titus, Upshur and Wood.

Highs throughout the weekend will be in the lower to mid 80s with lows in the 50s and 60s.

However, residents could be faced with a more widespread severe weather danger starting on Thursday as a potent storm emerges from the Rockies.

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Before reaching the Plains, the storm will spread snow over the Rocky Mountains and kick up strong winds, blowing dust and the fire danger over the Desert Southwest. Large hail and damaging winds are the main threats. This means that there is a potential for severe weather with this system.

The best chances for severe weather and flooding will be Friday night into Saturday. A north northwest wind of 11 to 16 miles per hour will gust as high as 25 miles per hour. However, there could be some severe storms just off to our northwest across portions of northern and central MS and northern Louisiana.

As with any weather pattern, we'll see if this one sticks around through the height of severe weather season or if it returns to a calmer weather.

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Heavy rain and flash flooding may also develop Wednesday for the Mississippi Valley and Upper Great Lakes, caution forecasters.