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Is the polar vortex returning to the central U.S. this week? / USA TODAY

Parts of the Midwest and Plains are getting a brief preview of September and October this week, as temperatures in many areas are dipping from 10 degrees to as much as 30 degrees below average.

Whether the chilly air is from the polar vortex or not -- a raging debate within the meteorological community over the past few days -- temperatures Tuesday morning could dip to record low levels (in the low 50s) in cities such as Chicago, Kansas City and Omaha, the Weather Channel predicts.

"Baseball fans watching Monday's Home Run Derby and Tuesday's All-Star Game at Target Field in Minneapolis may feel like they should be tailgating for a Minnesota Vikings football game in September," says AccuWeather meteorologist Kristina Pydynowski.

The core of the cool air will spread across the Great Lakes Tuesday through Wednesday, holding high temperatures in the 60s and lower 70s, Pydynowski reports.

By Wednesday morning, temperature records could fall in 30 cities, including Cincinnati, Des Moines and Madison, Wis. The chill should ease by week's end, however.

The Northwest won't be seeing any of the cool air, though, as a heat wave could lead to record high temperatures across the region.

Temperatures in Seattle should be in the upper 80s to near 90 degrees through mid-week, according to the Weather Channel. As of July 12, the city is in 2nd place for its warmest July on record, with temperatures averaging over 5 degrees above-average.

Highs above the 100-degree mark are likely in some locations in the Columbia River Basin, including Boise, Idaho, and Medford, Ore.



Copyright 2014USAToday

Read the original story: Record cold chills Midwest as Northwest bakes

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