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Blustery Saturday as Chicago area sees first snow

High winds teamed with Chicago's first snow of the season to give residents a taste of winter in fall./National Weather Service photo

The Chicago-area had its first sight of snow Saturday.

Residents from Northerly Island to Pilsen and in the south and west suburbs reported seeing snowfall early Saturday afternoon. High winds added to the drama of a day that eventually saw a little sun peak through the clouds.

Some took to Twitter to share photos — and disbelief — over the flakes.

Wind gusts reached 61 m.p.h. at O’Hare Airport and 60 m.p.h. at Midway Airport, according to the National Weather Service. There were some flight delays reported at both airports, according to the FAA website.

Some residents reported power outages. By 7 p.m. Saturday, ComEd reported outages affecting about 7,000 customers in Cook County. Around 11,000 Will County customers had outages and more than 2,000 in Kankakee County, according to the ComEd outage map.

The weather service said the cold air heightened the risk of falling “graupel,” which is “described as snow pellets or small soft hail.” Residents who posted reactions on Twitter seemed surprised to see such precipitation in October – then they chalked it up to the notoriously unpredictable Chicago weather.

Temperatures dropped to 40 degrees Saturday night as the weather service forecast clearing skies overnight, “setting the stage for several cool but dry and sunny days.” Sunday’s weather forecast is sunny with a high temp of merely 48 degrees. Monday will be the mildest day of the workweek, according to the National Weather Service, with high temperatures nearing 62 degrees.