Where to go to get cool in August 2017

August 7, 2017

With temperatures expected to reach, and likely exceed, 100 degrees this week, it's important to stay cool. Here's a roundup of cooling centers, community centers and other places to go to get out of the heat and a list of tips for staying cool if you do have to venture outdoors. You can also check out this interactive map for the locations of cool spaces, such as libraries and visit 211info.org/emergency or call 211 for the latest information.

Multnomah County Cooling Centers

Multnomah County is operating five cooling centers for adult adults, people with disabilities and people at high-risk for heat-related illnesses. Transportation to Multnomah County cooling centers can be arranged by calling Ride Connection at 503-226-0700. Advance reservations are encouraged. All rides are free of charge. Pets and children are welcome at the county cooling center locations. Each location also will have activities including board games and movies. Snacks and water also are available. Days, hours and times vary.

  • Multnomah County Walnut Park Building, 5325 N.E. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Portland (Hours: Weekdays, 5 p.m. to 9 p.m., Weekends, 2 p.m. to 9 p.m.) 
  • Multnomah County East Building, 600 N.E. 8th St., Gresham (Hours: Weekdays, 5 p.m. to 9 p.m., Weekends, 2 p.m. to 9 p.m.)
  • Hollywood Senior Center, 1820 N.E. 40th Ave., Portland (Hours: Weekdays, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., Weekends, 2 p.m. to 8 p.m.; *CLOSED Saturday)
  • Elm Court Center, 1032 SW Main St., Portland (Hours: Thursday through Sunday, 2 p.m. to 9 p.m.)
  • Friendly House, 1737 NW 26th Ave., (Hours: Thursday and Friday, 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.)

Other Cooling Centers

  • American Legion Post 134, 2104 N.E. Alberta St., Portland (Hours: Tuesday through Thursday, 10:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Friday, 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.)
  • Catholic Charities, 2740 S.E. Powell Boulevard, Portland (Hours: Tuesday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.)
  • City of Corbett, 35800 Historic Columbia River Hwy, Corbett (Hours: Wednesday through Friday, 2 p.m. to 8 p.m.)

Portland Parks & Recreation Community Centers

The lobbies of Portland Parks & Recreation's air conditioned community centers are open to the public as capacity allows.

  • Community Music Center, 3350 S.E. Francis St. 503-823-3177 (Hours: Monday, 11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.; Tuesday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Saturday, 9 a.m. to noon, CLOSED Sunday)
  • Charles Jordan Community Center, 9009 N. Foss Ave. 503-823-3631 (Hours: Monday through Friday, 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m.; Saturday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sunday, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.)
  • East Portland Community Center, 740 S.E. 106th Ave. 503-823-3450 (Hours: Monday through Friday, 6 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.; Saturday, 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sunday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.)
  • Matt Dishman Community Center, 77 N.E. Knott St. 503-823-3673 (Hours: Monday through Thursday, 5:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Friday, 5:30 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Saturday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sunday, 10:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.)
  • Multnomah Arts Center, 7688 S.W. Capitol Hwy. 503-823-2787 (Hours: Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.)
  • Mt. Scott Community Center, 5530 S.E. 72nd Ave. 503-823-3183 (Hours: Monday through Friday, 5:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.; Saturday, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Sunday, noon to 7 p.m.)
  • Southwest Community Center, 6820 S.W. 45th Ave. 503-823-2840 (Hours: Monday through Friday, 5:15 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.; Saturday, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Sunday, 9 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.)

Homeless Service Providers

Staff at the City of Portland and Multnomah County’s Joint Office of Homeless Services have compiled the following list of providers and their efforts to offer relief to people experiencing homelessness.

  • Catholic Charities Staff has opened a cooling space in the main-floor dining room at the former location of Loaves and Fishes. That location will be open during business hours. Water will also be made available. Women staying at the Kenton Women's Village have been invited into the main office during the heat wave. The village is stocked with water and ice, and workers have also brought in kiddie pools for the women and their pets.
  • Central City Concern will open its Martha Washington apartment building, 1115 S.W. 11th Ave., as a cooling center for Central City’s residents, patients and clients if needed. Buildings also will have cases of water on hand.
  • Human Solutions' shelters will remain open throughout the day, with air conditioning and water available in the family and women’s shelters. Mellow indoor activities, including movies, will be available for shelter guests.
  • Janus Youth Programs has extra fans on hand for its sleeping dorms and is providing water, along with providing air-conditioning in its common rooms. The agency purchased water and additional fans to ensure comfort for youth in shelter. Outreach workers, as they encounter people on the streets, will provide water and other resources as needed.
  • Native American Youth & Family Center (NAYA) is encouraging young clients to attend drop-in hours, where cooling supplies will be available. Staff is working with people they know are sleeping outside, sharing information on cooling shelters; connecting people to water and food, and encouraging overnight shelter stays as needed.
  • New Avenues for Youth is offering air-conditioned spaces and cold drinks, as well as guidance on caring for yourself in severely hot weather.
  • Outside In will expand hours Wednesday, Aug. 2, and Thursday, Aug. 3, until 8 p.m. The agency is prepared to expand hours on other days as needed. A drop-in space at Outside In's day program will offer air-conditioned spaces to escape the heat, as well as hydration stations. Its health clinic will be open for those with heat-related health issues.
  • Outside In and New Avenues for Youth are coordinating to ensure that day program hours will be open and accessible.
  • Salvation Army Female Emergency Shelter (SAFES), at 30 S.W. 2nd, is air-conditioned. The dorm will open earlier, at 4 p.m., for shelter guests. The facility is providing bottled water as well as refillable water bottles. Staff also is connecting an ice machine for drinking water and to create cooling packs.
  • Most Transition Projects' shelters are already open to clients 24 hours. The Columbia shelter (in the former Shleifer Furniture building at 509 S.E. Grand), will open earlier, at 5 p.m., on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. Staff will provide water, popsicles and sunscreen. The Bud Clark Commons day center, 655 N.W. Hoyt St., opened additional spaces and is offering activities and water.

Tips for staying cool:

  • Drink plenty of water, non-alcoholic and decaffeinated fluids. People with health conditions such as epilepsy or heart or kidney disease should talk to a doctor before increasing their consumption.
  • Find the cool places. Visit a family member or neighbor with air conditioning, or go to the nearest public library, shopping mall or other cooled space.
  • Dress for the weather. Wear a wide-brimmed hat and loose, lightweight, light-colored clothing to reflect heat and sunlight.
  • Never wait in a parked vehicle or leave a child, elder or pet waiting in a parked car. Temperatures inside parked vehicles can rise dangerously high – even with the windows open.
  • Slow down. Reduce or reschedule strenuous activities until the heat of the day has passed.
  • Stay out of the sun. Sunburn interferes with the skin’s ability to cool.
  • Take a cool bath, shower or sponge bath. Cool water can help cool an overheated body.
  • Pay attention to older adults, people with disabilities or health conditions.
  • Check on those who are at-risk at least twice a day.