Southern Wisconsin May View the Northern Lights Sunday Evening, Depending on Clouds

The National Weather Service in Sullivan says that counties in Wisconsin near the Illinois border might be able to see the northern lights on Sunday night if the clouds are clear.

Depending on weather factors like cloud cover, the northern lights could be seen in more than half of the country Sunday night or Monday morning.

Taylor Patterson, a meteorologist with the NWS in Sullivan, said that clouds will start to break up in the southern counties of Wisconsin in the late afternoon and evening on Sunday. Patterson said that people near the border might be able to see the northern lights around sunset or just after. Around 7:45 p.m., the sun will go down in the southern part of Wisconsin.

Patterson said that if the lights can be seen, some people will be able to see them with their own eyes if they look outside long enough. She said that the best way to see the lights would be to use a long-exposure photo or a smartphone camera with a night mode.

Patterson said it’s hard to say how likely it is that people will see the lights now that the clouds are breaking up.

The NOAA’s Space Weather Prediction Center says that the chance of seeing the show is higher because the sun had a solar flare on Friday that was aimed at Earth.

Patterson said that the rest of Wisconsin will have a harder time seeing the lights because they will be hidden by clouds along and north of Interstate 94.

She said that scattered and isolated rain showers could happen in northern and central Wisconsin on Sunday and Monday, giving them even less chance of a break in the clouds.

Late Sunday night, people from all over the state started posting on social media about the colors they saw in the sky. Some of the places from which photos were shared were around Madison, between Port Washington and Belgium, Grafton, and Sheboygan County.

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