4th festivities still on schedule despite weather

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Hurricane Arthur continues to intensify, possibly hitting North Carolina as a category 2 storm, but should stay well south of Rhode Island as it passes out to sea.

Still, the cold front schedule to settle over New England tonight will draw moisture from the hurricane, causing heavy rains on the 4th of July, especially in the afternoon — good news for Bristol 4th of July revelers. The parade is scheduled to kick off at Hope and Chestnut streets at 10:30 Friday morning.

Showers are possible during the morning, according to wpri Channel 12 meteorologist Tony Petrarca, but the worst of the topical rains will be in the afternoon. Up to three inches of rain is possible Friday afternoon, potentially flooding streets around Bristol. Conditions at the beach and off-shore for boaters will not be ideal for the holiday with strong rip currents extending out from Arthur and seas as high as 15 feet expected.

Showers are also possible tonight as the cold front moves into the area. The Drum & Bugle Competition at Mt. Hope High School at 6 p.m., the concerts in Independence Park — Doug Botelho and Family at 6:30 p.m.; Detroit Breakdown at 7:45 p.m. — and the fireworks display at Independence Park after dark are all still scheduled to start as planned. Check with eastbayri.com for updates if anything changes.

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Jim McGaw

A lifelong Portsmouth resident, Jim graduated from Portsmouth High School in 1982 and earned a journalism degree from the University of Rhode Island in 1986. He's worked two different stints at East Bay Newspapers, for a total of 18 years with the company so far. When not running all over town bringing you the news from Portsmouth, Jim listens to lots and lots and lots of music, watches obscure silent films from the '20s and usually has three books going at once. He also loves to cook crazy New Orleans dishes for his wife of 25 years, Michelle, and their two sons, Jake and Max.