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Cold snap sets record in Manatee

MANATEE — The cold wave of 2010 has officially earned its place in Manatee and Sarasota weather history.

When the thermometer registered below 40 degrees early today it marked 11 consecutive days with overnight lows below 40 at the Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport, said meteorologist Logan Johnson of the National Weather Service in Ruskin.

The previous record for a cold snap was 10 consecutive days from Dec. 30, 2000 to Jan. 8, 2001.

The cold may linger long enough to extend the record to a 12th day if the mercury slides under 40 in the early morning hours Thursday.

“We are forecasting it to be right on the threshold of 40 Thursday, so it could very well extend another day,” Johnson added.

The lowest recorded temperature during the record cold wave has been 28 degrees, on both Monday and Tuesday at the Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport.

But the National Weather Service also got unofficial reports of 24 degrees in Myakka City on Monday , Johnson said.

Some of Manatee and Sarasota’s neighbors are also on a record run.

Punta Gorda in Charlotte County is also 11 days below 40 overnight, easily breaking its previous record of 8, Johnson said.

A warming trend began today and is expected to continue through the week with Saturday featuring the warmest weather, with highs in the low to mid 70s, Johnson said.