The new frigid blast will reach the northern Plains on Saturday, then sweep southeastward over the balance of the New Year's Day weekend.
Temperatures in Minneapolis are forecast to fail to exceed zero F on Saturday and Sunday.
"Bitterly cold arctic air will settle in across a large swath of the U.S. as we turn the calendar from 2017 to 2018," said AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Dan Pydynowski.
"People will really need to bundle up if they are heading out Sunday night for New Year's Eve celebrations in places like Chicago, for example, where the high will be 15 F on Sunday, around 15 degrees below normal," he warned.
Cities as far south as Nashville and Little Rock, Arkansas, will experience temperatures more than 20 degrees Fahrenheit below average by the end of the weekend. Temperatures will be no higher than the 20s at both locations on Sunday and New Year's Day.