12/08/2011 05:56 pm ET

Chicago's Snowfall Stall Could Break Records; One Suburb Improvises

As Chicago approaches one of the longest snow-free Decembers in its history, possible flurries Thursday threaten to usher the city, finally, into the throes winter--but if they don't, this season will have one of the Top 5 latest snowfalls ever recorded.

Light flurries are expected Thursday night, according to Accuweather, but if the snowfall doesn't accumulate at the recording station at O'Hare, this season will likely be a record-breaking contender.

"The city is on the northern fringe of a weather system," said National Weather Service meteorologist Kevin Burk, according to the Chicago Tribune. "If we miss it, there are no reasonable chances of measurable snow for the next several days and we may break that record."

Chicago's first snowfall usually comes around Nov. 21, the Chicago Sun-Times reports. This time last year, the city had already seen 6.9 inches of snow.

Undeterred by nature's plans, suburban Highland Park ensured there would be snow at their holiday "Shhhhhh...opping" event Thursday by making their own. The suburb's downtown shopping district was covered in manufactured snow for the weekend event, which features live reindeer, carolers and ice sculptures, according to NBC.