Cooling centers across Columbia can help during extreme heat

Wednesday, August 24, 2011 | 2:51 p.m. CDT
Students at West Junior High School board their buses after the early dismissal on Wednesday morning. West Junior was one of seven schools that had an early dismissal due to the lack of air conditioning in the schools. Assistant Principal Daniel Rector said the early dismissals are in the best interest of the kids.

COLUMBIA — Wednesday's high temperature will hover near 97 degrees, and it's expected to feel like triple digits, according to the National Weather Service.

A heat advisory is in effect for Boone County until 7 p.m. Wednesday, and the weather service expects Heat Index Values to be between 105 degrees  and 110 degrees.


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The weather services' forecast for Thursday shows that temperatures will drop, with a high of 86 degrees.

The Columbia/Boone County Public Health and Human Services Department offers a few tips to avoid heat-related illnesses:

  • Dress for the heat. Wear a hat or use an umbrella to block the sun.
  • Drink water, and avoid alcoholic beverages and caffeine.
  • Eat small meals, and eat more often.
  • Stay indoors with air conditioning when possible.
  • Take regular breaks when physically active.

Cooling centers are open to the public during business hours and provide air conditioning, access to restrooms and sometimes drinking water. Centers do not provide medical relief or a place to sleep overnight.

Here is a list of cooling centers throughout Columbia:

Activity and Recreation Center

1701 W. Ash St.

Hours: 5 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Monday through Friday; 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday; 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday.

Armory Sports and Recreation Center

701 E. Ash St.

Hours: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Columbia Public Library

100 W. Broadway

Hours: 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday; 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday; 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday.

Missouri United Methodist Church

204 S. Ninth St.

Hours: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday; 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. This location is sometimes open until 9 p.m., but it varies.  

Oakland Plaza Senior Center

805 Old 63 N.

Hours: 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Public Health and Human Services Department

1005 W. Worley St.

Hours: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Salvation Army

1108 W. Ash St.

Hours: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. every day. This location is also open when the temperature is 90 degrees or higher.

Salvation Army Harbor House

602 N. Ann St.

Hours: No specific time, just during the heat of the day.

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