5 PM UPDATE:
Heavy rain is widespread across Arkansas early this evening. The tornado threat has remained well south of the Natural State while temperatures cling to the 60s. The chance for severe weather looks to be slim to none at this point. In time the rain will push out this evening and leave us with accumulations around 1".
The upper disturbance that is spinning over New Mexico will finally begin to move Northeast today into The Plains. As the system moves Northeast it will draw up warm, moist air from the Gulf of Mexico across Arkansas by Sunday afternoon. Showers and thunderstorms associated with the disturbance will spread into Central Arkansas. These showers and storms will likely organize into a disorganized squall line by early Sunday evening.
Strong gusty winds and small hail will be the main threat with the storms, however, there may be just enough spin in the atmosphere to support a tornado threat as well. Based on the latest data, the greatest threat for a brief tornado will be on the southeast edge of the state. It is in this region where there is the best combination of lift, heat and rotation in the atmosphere. (SPC SREF model showing the small risk of a tornado in Louisiana and Southern Arkansas)
There are a couple of factors that will mitigate the severe risk. One of the main inhibiting factors will be the lack of warm, unstable air. On Sunday, there will be no room for the sunshine to warm up our atmosphere. Instead clouds and spotty showers in the early morning hours will keep the severe threat down. The only spot to watch for will be in Southern Arkansas where temperatures will be a little warmer and there will be more moisture in the air.
All in all, keep it tuned to FOX 16 for the very latest information. We'll continue to monitor the skies for you and let you know about any breaking news related to weather.