Flurries Thursday night and later on Friday could bring a total of 1 to 2 inches of snow to metro area; and may be followed by more next week.
Josh Boustead, meteorologist with the National Weather Service, said the light snowfall is a sign of a change in the weather pattern.
"Just the fact that we're having measurable precipitation indicates the pattern is changing," he said.
Commuters will likely wake to a light blanket Friday morning, he said. Friday evening's snow should have moved out of the area by the time people wake up Saturday.
Next week brings the potential of additional light snow, he said.
Mark Paquette, a meteorologist with AccuWeather, said Omaha, southeast Nebraska and southwest Iowa are likely to get an inch or two of snow with this system moving through.
Even that amount would be significant for this winter. The last decent snow in Omaha was Jan. 1, when 1.2 inches fell.
Boustead said the snowfall will create the usual winter driving issues, but no major problems. Winds, he said, shouldn't be a factor.
"Anytime you put snow on the (road's) surface, you need to take caution," he said. "We've not had it for awhile."
Boustead and Paquette said the snow is expected to end before daybreak Saturday.
Paquette said central and western Nebraska is likely to see higher totals, about 2 inches to 4 inches, except for southwest Nebraska, which could see 3 inches to 6 inches.
The change in Midlands weather is due to shifting patterns farther west.
Paul Pastelok, a meteorologist with AccuWeather.com, said Nebraska and Iowa are starting to get weather systems that include flows from the Pacific Northwest.
Once that pattern sets up, it will help block the Arctic air that has been racing down the center of the country, he said.
The latest long-term forecast by the U.S. Climate Prediction Center projects that much of Iowa, eastern Nebraska and northern Missouri will see colder — and possibly wetter — than normal weather in the first part of February.