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Schools canceling Friday night games due to air quality

Smoke from central Washington and Idaho fires is expected to impact the region through the remainder of Friday. There’s little to no winds floating through the region, so the National Weather Service expects the haze to sit in a stagnant pattern.

The Department of Ecology has reported unhealthy air has been reported in Spokane Valley, Clarkston, Pullman, Ritzville and LaCrosse.

Due to poor air quality conditions, some schools are cancelling their Friday night games. We're aggregating a list of games that have been canceled or postponed due to air quality. You can follow the full list as it is updated at our sports section on www.kxly.com.

Lakeside and Lapwai schools were expected to play in Lapwai, but then the game was switched to Plummer. Air quality officials with the Coeur d’Alene Tribe then recommended they cancel the game saying the smoke was coming in heavier and to expect more haze during the evening.

"Blue moon" scheduled for Friday evening

"Blue moon" scheduled for Friday evening

Strange things always seem to happen on full moons, but what about an additional full moon on the same month? That's called a blue moon. Sorry to disappoint you, but technically - it's not blue.

Because lunar events are not aligned with our calendar months, sometimes the 29.5 cycle resets. We already had a pre-funk earlier this month, a full moon on August 1. History is now is repeating itself this Friday, August 31.

It will be awhile the next time you see two full moons in the same month. You'll have to wait until July 2015. The skies are expected to be clear, so don't stand alone this Friday. Grab a love of your own and check out the night sky.

Storify: Inland Northwest storm packs a wallop

Storify: Inland Northwest storm packs a wallop

A storm is brewing through the Inland Northwest with severe weather warnings from the National Weather Service. The complex is moving into the area from the south and southwest and is forming heavy rainfall, thunderstorms and even flash flooding in some areas.

We'll be sharing weather news throughout our evening newscasts and on www.kxly.com. Below is a Storify of today's weather. For the latest on what's happening, keep scrolling through the Storify. Everything is in chronological order. 

To tweet along, use the hashtag: #svrinlandnw. For weather breaking news, following @kriscrockerkxly, @kxly4news and the @nwsspokane

Strong thunderstorms predicted for Inland Northwest

Strong thunderstorms predicted for Inland Northwest

Another set of thunderstorms is predicted to sweep through the Inland Northwest overnight and through Friday and it's expected to pack a wallop. The National Weather Service is preparing for an increased risk for the region with stormy weather producing strong thunderstorms and heavy rainfall.

The storms will travel over the basin and through the Cascades this evening and arrive in the Spokane area by late Friday morning.

The NWS says a “negative tilt trough” is pushing into the the region from the southwest. It will combine with moist and unstable air producing large hail, damaging winds and very heavy rains.

Flooding is also a possibility due to the precipitation. A flash flood watch was issued by the NWS Spokane office for numerous counties in both Idaho and Washington. It’s in effect Thursday night through Friday and could create urban flooding, increased water levels in small streams, landslides or debris flows.

Russian wildfire smoke invades Inland Northwest

Russian wildfire smoke invades Inland Northwest

Floating high in the sky, a plume of smoke had meteorologists at the National Weather Service office in Spokane baffled. Visible on their satellite images, the plume was seen heading northeast 20-30,000 ft on a jet stream. They thought the smoke might have originated from wildfires in Colorado and Wyoming, but the plume came from the Pacific Ocean.

Turns out, the plume traveled about 5,000 miles from southeast Russia.

It took over a week for the plume to make its way from the Khabarovsk Territory where wildfires were burning. The blanketing smoke was captured by NASA’s Aqua satellite on June 25 with the heaviest plumes west of the Mamiya Strait.

What does this have to do with Spokane? NWS Spokane was able to capture the light layer of smoke as it traveled over the region.

[Insert Punny Weather Headline Here]

Who is tired of talking about weather? We’re not. A writer with WSU News pointed out something rather clever:

“It’s obvious that a Washingtonian did not coin the phrase about March weather "coming in like a lion and going out like a lamb.”

An interview with an Agricultural Weather Network meteorologist, Nic Lloyd, pointed out some interesting statistics. According to Brian Clark’s article, Spokane received a record 4.56 inches of rain in March.

On March 29th, the state was most particularly wet. This means a little advantage for the Cascade Mountain snowpack. The director AgWeatherNet, Gerrit Hoogenboom, says the snowpack was above normal at the end of March.

Lousy spring weather affects WSU Baseball

Lousy spring weather affects WSU Baseball

We’re pretty sure every student that started their morning trek to classes in Pullman Wednesday morning cursed to the heavens above. Predicted winter weather showered upon the Palouse area with an expectation of two to six inches and blustery winds. The National Weather Service is reporting about one inch of snow accumulation in the Pullman area as of this morning.

The weather seems to be getting in the way of many activities in the region. Baseball is just one victim of recent weather. The university’s baseball team had to suspend and postpone four home games and two on the road during this season all because of bad weather.

Here’s a list of those affected games provided by Craig Lawson with the WSU Athletics communication department:

  • Feb. 18 at Mississippi State (due to rain), played DH Feb. 19.
  • Feb. 25 home vs. Nebraska Omaha (due to snow), tried to play DH Feb. 26, first game was suspended due to snow, regularly scheduled game postponed, finished suspended game and played Feb. 26 game both Feb. 27.
  • March 20 home vs. Gonzaga (due to expected weather), we did not want Gonzaga to bus down from Spokane and not be able to play, game rescheduled for May 22.
  • March 25 at UCLA (due to rain), made it up March 26.
  • April 1 home vs. USC (due to expected weather), rescheduled for April 2, USC had travel issues that day, so it is now rescheduled for May 15.

The next three games are scheduled in Pullman. The Cougars are playing Seattle University on April 6th and 7th at 5:30 p.m. and April 7th at 2:00 p.m. Cross your fingers for nice weather. The Pullman area is expecting a chance of snow showers on Thursday morning which could turn into rain in the afternoon. Precipitation could continue through Friday night.