By Katie Fehlinger

PHILADELPHIA (CBS)–A relatively tranquil weather pattern will help kick off the New Year in Philadelphia. However, don’t expect it to last very long! The ingredients of our next snow storm are starting to organize in the central U.S. We’re watching two main pieces of the puzzle – a clipper out of Canada, and a separate piece of energy over the southern Plains.

Those two systems will eventually merge, and lead to the next Northeast snowfall. Here are the basic bullet points:

Timing: The storm is a Thursday-Friday event. More specifically, the Delaware Valley will generally see the snow fall Thursday evening until Friday late morning, possibly lingering into the early afternoon.

Our region may sit in a “lull zone” of just cloudy skies most of Thursday since the storm will still be evolving and gathering strength. Gradually, snow will creep in through the Poconos and overspread the entire Delaware Valley by Thursday evening.

That said, the best chance for the kids to see a snow day is Friday, since the morning commute will likely be most affected.

How Much Snow?

In general, model guidance is in good agreement that the Delaware Valley will see strictly snow from the storm, in part because it gets underway a little later (i.e. Thursday evening). Our area likely sees a general 2-4″ of snow. Locally lower or higher amounts are possible and we’ll update you as we tweak the forecast.

Brutal Cold to Follow

Frigid polar air will funnel in behind the storm leading to temperatures that may trend as low as 20 degrees below average. The coldest time frame is sunset Friday into Saturday morning when the thermometer may struggle to break out of the single digits.

Although not as harsh as Friday, Saturday night looks bitter! Eagles fans will need to bundle up adequately (in team colors, of course!) for the playoff game in south Philly with temperatures no warmer than the low 20’s at kickoff.

As we fine tune the forecast, expect additional updates from the entire Eyewitness Weather Team.

Happy New Year!