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White Christmas looks likely for Western New York

The lake-effect snowstorm that caused fits on area highways last week also brought good news for those rooting for a white Christmas.

It might just be the reason the holiday stays white this year for the first time since 2013.

Seven inches of snow remained on the ground Monday morning at the Buffalo Niagara International Airport ... with six days to go until Christmas.

Another inch forecast by the end of Monday night should put a new cap of white on the snow pack hardened by the weekend's deep freeze.

Then, Buffalo looks at a calmer week with some sunny days and a string of daily highs in the low to mid 30s.

Barring a drastic weekend warmup - which early forecast models initially suggested but have since backed off on - it all adds up to what's likely to be the first white Christmas in Buffalo in three years.

The eastern United States looks to be warmer than normal on Christmas Day this year, according to forecast maps, however, probably not warm enough to melt the snow that fell in Buffalo during last week's lake-effect storms. (National Weather Service)

Christmas Eve day looks to be the week's warmest day. The forecast shows mostly cloudy conditions with a chance of rain and snow showers and a high near 40 degrees.

Temperatures are forecast to drop back into the upper 30s for Christmas Day with similar conditions expected.

The midnight temperature Saturday is pegged to be 33 degrees with a slight chance for rain or snow showers. Light southwest winds are expected.

Unseasonably warm Christmas temperatures visited Buffalo over the last two years.

In 2014, a 57-degree, rainy Dec. 24 assured the Christmas holiday would stay green. It was 43 degrees on Christmas Day.

Last year marked the warmest month of December in Buffalo's history.

A record-setting 66-degree Dec. 24 with a trace of rain gave way to 48 degrees on Christmas Day with not a single snowflake in sight.

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