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    Cold to cut into bay area's spring weather

    By LEANORA MINAI, Times Staff Writer
    © St. Petersburg Times
    published March 30, 2003

    After a month of unseasonably warm weather, cooler temperatures will sweep across the Tampa Bay area tonight.

    An approaching cold front from Canada will bring rain today and temperatures in the mid 40s Monday and Tuesday. The wind chill factor will make it feel colder.

    "It's going to feel like it's 30 or 35 degrees," said Paul Close, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Ruskin.

    Brooksville in Hernando County and Crystal River in Citrus County could see patches of frost Monday night, but forecasters do not expect a freeze.

    The last cold snap in the Tampa Bay area was Feb. 12, and it brought lows of 46 degrees.

    "It's been pretty mild the last month," Close said. "We are in the top five for warmest Marches right now since 1890."

    This morning should be mostly cloudy with showers and scattered thunderstorms in the morning and afternoon.

    Tonight, temperatures should begin dropping to the upper 40s.

    On Tuesday, clear skies will bring temperatures in the low 70s.

    "We should be recovering," Close said. "Each day, it gets a little warmer."

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