lows_0306.jpgThis would have been an excellent week to escape to Miami! We are going to have a bitter blast of cold air beginning later today. It's already quite windy outside, but tonight and tomorrow will feel downright nasty as an arctic air mass whooshes into town. Before then temperatures will creep up toward 40 degrees. After the front, we'll see a quick cooling into the 20s before reaching the lower teens tomorrow morning. If you're wondering, we won't break the record low of five degrees which was set in 1872.

Wind chills will fall to around zero tonight and stay there until Wednesday morning. Tomorrow's high will only be in the low-20s, more than twenty degrees cooler than normal. Temperatures will be slightly higher on Wednesday. However, it will feel much warmer as the winds will have died down. The cold weather will last at least through Thursday, and maybe Friday, before warming up for the weekend.

If you can't get enough of the cold weather this coming weekend is New York City International Polar Weekend at the American Museum of Natural History. The event marks the NYC kickoff of the International Polar Year and is sponsored by the museum, Columbia, Barnard, the Explorers Club and Wings WorldQuest (Disclosure: Gothamist has friends and colleagues among the presenters at the event. Sad disclosure: None of those friends and colleagues told us about this event.). Events range from Canadian Inuit throat singing to film clips of Shackleton's 1914 Antarctic expedition, to lectures for adults and activities for kids.

Map of tomorrow morning's predicted low temperatures from the National Digital Forecast Database.