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Strong Winds In Fairfield County Could Hinder Stamford's Balloon Parade

Oscar the Grouch had some issues dealing with the wind at Stamford's balloon parade last year.
Oscar the Grouch had some issues dealing with the wind at Stamford's balloon parade last year. Photo Credit: Alissa Smith, file photo

FAIRFIELD COUNTY, Conn. -- Strong winds may ground the giant helium balloons in Sunday's Parade Spectacular in Stamford after the National Weather Service put a Wind Advisory in place for Fairfield County for Sunday.

Strong northwest winds of 20 to 35 mph with gusts of up to 45 mph were predicted for 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday across Southern Connecticut and Long Island, N.Y., the Weather Service said. The skies will be clear with a high temperature of only about 28 degrees, it said.

Organizers of the Parade Spectacular, which steps off at noon Sunday in downtown Stamford , will be keeping an eye on the wind.

Sandra Goldstein, president of the Downtown Special Services District, told the Stamford Advocate that the balloons would fly if the winds stay below 25 mph. But the rest of the parade will go on regardless of the wind or temperature. The balloons were inflated Saturday night as planned and grounded with sandbags until the parade steps off.

The strongest winds were predicted for late morning through late afternoon with downed tree limbs and power outages possible, the weather service said.

Driving can be difficult with strong winds, and the weather service urged caution, especially for those in tall vehicles.

A Red Flag Warning was also in place for the region from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, with dry and windy conditions that would be favorable for the spread of wildfires, the National Weather Service said.

Along with strong winds, the relative humidity may be as low as 25 percent. Fire could spread rapidly if ignited, the National Weather Service said.

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