Temperatures may be in the 100s by the middle of this week, but Vancouver has cool places where residents of all ages can seek some relief. Here are some options where you can splash, learn or simply chill.
Visit Vancouver Parks and Recreation’s community centers to cool off, meet up with friends, or take part in programs to play, swim or get fit. Marshall Community Center is fully air conditioned. Most of the open areas at Firstenburg Community Center are ventilated with moving air, but are not air conditioned. The swimming pool at the Marshall Community Center is closed for renovation until late August, but the indoor pool at the Firstenburg Community Center is open.
At both Firstenburg and Marshall centers, the Wi-Fi-enabled lobby areas are open to the public, free of charge. However, popular summer programs now underway may make these common areas busier than usual. Fitness centers and the Firstenburg swimming pool are available to members or by paying a drop-in fee. Hours, schedules and other information can be found online at: www.vanparksrec.org (click on Community Centers at the top of the page).
Vancouver Public Works’ Water Resources Education Center, along the Columbia River and waterfront trail, is an air-conditioned oasis for exploring our natural resources, from the aquaria to hands-on exhibits to toddler-size learning at Puddles Place. The Water Center is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, and from noon to 5 p.m. on Saturday. Admission to the Water Center is free. Children must be accompanied by an adult. For Water Center information or directions, please see www.cityofvancouver.us/watercenter.
There are other air-conditioned options around Vancouver, too, including restaurants, theaters and shops, as well as Fort Vancouver Regional Library District locations. Visit the Clark Regional Emergency Services Agency’s (CRESA) website to view a list of Clark County cooling centers at http://cresa911.org/emergency-management/emergency-preparedness/heat-stay-cool/.
The City of Vancouver reminds residents that it’s important to stay hydrated during heat advisories. Where possible, stay indoors in an air-conditioned or cooled building. If swimming outdoors, be aware of river temperatures and currents and take precautions to be safe, including the use of flotation devices.
Children and pets should NEVER be left in a closed, parked vehicle for any period of time, no matter how short. Pet owners are also encouraged to provide cool shelter for animals and plenty of water. Please note that pets are not allowed in the City’s community centers, except for service animals.
For more hot weather safety tips from CRESA, visit http://cresa911.org/emergency-management/emergency-preparedness/heat-stay-cool/.
Battle Ground Community Center extends hours
Starting tomorrow, Tue., Aug. 1, the Battle Ground Community Center, located at 912 East Main Street in Battle Ground, will open extended hours as a cooling center to offer relief from the heat. The center will be open 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. each day from Tue., Aug. 1 through Fri., Aug. 4 and from 3 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Sat., Aug. 5.
Those looking to beat the heat will find a beautiful, comfortable and cool northwest lodge-styled facility. Patrons are encouraged to bring books, board games, puzzles, electronic devices and even a picnic meal as they enjoy the air conditioning. Free public WiFi is available for those who desire to play or work on remote devices.
For more information, contact the Parks & Recreation Department at (360) 342-5380.
City of Washougal cooling stations
The city of Washougal will be opening cooling stations this week at the municipal complex in downtown Washougal located at 1701 C Street as follows:
- Monday — City Hall (regular hours of operation)
- Tuesday — City Hall and Library (regular hours of operation), Community Center (5-9 p.m.)
- Wednesday — City Hall and Library (regular hours of operation), Community Center (5-9 p.m.)
- Thursday — City Hall and Library (regular hours of operation), Community Center (5-9 p.m.)
- Friday — City Hall and Library (regular hours of operation), Community Center (5-9 p.m.)
There are a number of churches within the community participating in the relief effort. Look for the COOLING STATION signs.
Clark County Public Health in coordination with CRESA has also released information regarding how to avoid overheating and the prevention of heat-related illness.
Information provided by city of Vancouver, city of Battle Ground and city of Washougal.