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Long Island weather: Sunny and dry, highs near 80 degrees

People take in the view of sunflowers as

People take in the view of sunflowers as they take pictures of them at the Waterdrinker Family Farm and Garden in Manorville on Saturday. Credit: James Carbone

Sunny skies, dry air and daytime highs just below 80 degrees — who could fault this late-summer weather, which Long Islanders can anticipate all the way from Saturday through Labor Day on Monday and on into Wednesday, when clouds may set in?

"Tranquil weather is on tap today as high pressure builds across the region from the south and west," the National Weather Service said. "A few high clouds early this morning will diminish leaving mostly sunny skies through the day."

And the weather service predicted dew points will slide into the 40s, though sea breezes partly will counteract that decline, raising them back to the low 50s — still what the weather service calls a comfortable level of humidity.

Long Islanders flocked to state parks and beaches Saturday. Some spots filled to capacity early and were closed to incoming visitors and traffic. At Robert Moses State Park, Field 3 was closed by 8:30 a.m. and Field 5 by 11 a.m.

At Jones Beach, Field 6 was closed by 8:45 a.m. and Field 2 by 1 p.m.

Hither Hills State Park in Montauk was closed by 11:15, Planting Fields Arboretum in Oyster Bay by 1:15, and Caleb Smith State Park Preserve in Smithtown by 2:30.

And Suffolk health officials said Centerport Yacht Club Beach, Huntington Beach Community Association Beach and Fleets Cove Beach in Centerport are closed to bathing due to unacceptable bacteria levels. Tanner Park Beach in Copiague remains closed. The beaches will reopen when further testing reveals that the bacteria have returned to acceptable levels. 

Meantime ideal weather conditions should continue for a few days. Even Wednesday should be at least partly sunny.

The weather service predicts a 40% chance of rain on Thursday and a 30% chance on Friday. Highs are expected to be at or near 80 degrees all three days.

Those forecasts — which is not uncommon — may change.

The "main forecast dilemma" continues to be in the Thursday to Friday time frame, with the timing of a frontal system, the weather service said.

Until then, Long Islanders can thank the high pressure air mass that the weather service said is anchored just off the New England coast for this stretch of lovely late-summer days. 

The column of high pressure, the weather service said, "will result in mainly dry conditions Monday night through mid week with increasing humidity due to a prolonged period of onshore southeast flow."

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