Cloudy skies but no morning rain predicted for July 4 picnic

The weather report calls for cloudy skies this morning as U.S. citizens and Costa Rican friends gather west of San José for the annual July 4 picnic. But there is a good chance of afternoon downpours.

As is traditional, the July 4 picnic mostly a morning affair. It ends at 1 p.m. today.

The Instituto Meteorological Nacional said that one of those tropical waves is expected to cross the country early today increasing the instability of the air.

A wave is a low pressure trough that originates in Africa and sweeps across the globe in tropical latitudes. The wave will take a good part of the day to make the crossing, said the institute. This will contribute to afternoon thunderstorms.

Meanwhile in the Pacific there are two disturbances. The first is north of Costa Rica. It is likely to become a tropical cyclone within the next two days, according to the U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami. There may be some effect here, but the system is moving away from Central America to the west northwest at about 10 mph. A second system is weaker, but it is directly off the Pacific coast of Costa Rica. It, too, is moving slowly westward.

The picnic is at the Cervercería Costa Rica grounds off the General Cañas highway in the direction of Juan Santamaría airport from San José

To overcome the problem of traffic jams and lack of parking spaces, the American Colony Committee has set up an off-site parking area and a bus shuttle.

The site is next to the Avis rental car headquarters in Belén. The Cervercería picnic grounds has limited parking, and visitors have parked in nearby fields in the past. Some visitors had to park on the highway and exit ramps, but that is being discouraged this year, and the committee said that cars parked there will be towed. A map to the parking area is HERE!

The General Cañas highway still is experiencing some delays due to the washout a week ago. Those coming from San José to attend the picnic can take Ruta 27, the Caldera highway, west to the new El Coyol west of the airport exit and then backtrack to the picnic grounds. There also is a route through Belén that reaches the General Cañas just east of the airport.

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