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Weekend storm brings heavy snow, slick roads, flight cancellations

A lone pedestrian walks along Eighth Avenue South in Fargo during the snowfall on Saturday, March 9. David Samson / The Forum1 / 5
Red River Zoo gray wolves get sleepy during the snowfall on Saturday, March 9. David Samson / The Forum2 / 5
Two city of Fargo road graders plow snow along First Avenue North on Saturday, March 9. David Samson / The Forum3 / 5
Pamela Aanstad of Fargo and her dog, Harley, greet a visitor named Captain during an outing at the Village West Dog Park on Saturday, March 9. David Samson / The Forum4 / 5
Trudy Stubson slides past Mercedes Johnson during an outing at the Dike West sliding hill in downtown Fargo on Saturday, March 9. David Samson / The Forum5 / 5

FARGO — The weather may not be bitterly cold for the remainder of winter, but it's still expected to cause problems throughout this week and beyond.

Some local businesses closed early on Saturday, but Junkyard Brewing in Moorhead persevered.

“We’re all Minnesotan, we all get it,” bartender Jon Walters said. “We like to sit and watch the snow fall together. We’re here, we’re ready to rock ‘n’ roll.”

Meanwhile, Zandbroz Variety in Fargo closed three hours early.

The National Weather Service predicts up to 9 inches of total snowfall in Fargo-Moorhead during the weekend storm and said the first rainfall of the season is likely to occur midweek.

Northwestern and west-central Minnesota, including Detroit Lakes and Bemidji, could see 10 to 12 inches or more.

On Saturday evening, March 9, no travel was advised in south-central and eastern North Dakota, Interstate 29 was closed from Grand Forks to Watertown, S.D., and Interstate 94 was closed from Bismarck to Fargo. Several flights were canceled or delayed at Hector International Airport in Fargo.

A winter storm warning is in effect until 1 p.m. Sunday in the southern Red River Valley.

Along with snowfall, winds were expected to gust up to 35 mph Saturday night, causing blowing snow on roads. Wind speeds are forecast to drop to 20 mph on Sunday, with light snow showers.

"It's not a lot of wind. It's mostly about roads being snow-covered. Roads are icy," WDAY meteorologist John Wheeler said. "There will still be issues (Sunday)."

In addition, Wheeler said there is another system moving in on Tuesday through Wednesday, and possibly lasting into Thursday, which will likely include a mix of snow and rain.

Temperatures for the week are expected to peak on Wednesday, flirting with 40 degrees, according to the National Weather Service.

"Looks like we've beaten back most of the below zero stuff. We won't have anymore arctic air this year," Wheeler said.

The high temperatures are a good thing for people enjoying the outdoors, but the weather service is concerned about the wet snow.

"It's not good to see a lot of liquid come this time of year," said Carl Jones, a weather service meteorologist.

On Thursday, the weather service released an updated spring flood outlook, predicting major flooding on the Red River in Fargo-Moorhead. “The risk for significant snowmelt flooding has further increased, running well above long-term historical averages across the Red River and Devils Lake Basins,” meteorologists said.

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