Can anybody enlighten me as to whether one should write "is" or "are" in this sentence?:

"There _____________ rain and violent storms off the coast."

Would we be looking at a plural idea despite "rain" being singular? For some reason "There are rain and ..." sounds a little odd to me, although probably logical and correct.

(I am aware I could get around this one by shuffling the subjects around: "There are violent storms and rain off the coast", since the plural form storms warrants the use of "are", but that would be cheating).

Thanx.