Cooling Centers offer relief from weekend heat

SOUTH COUNTY — A three-day heat wave took over much of California just in time for Labor Day weekend, and the National Weather Service announced an excessive heat advisory warning for Monterey County and the San Francisco Bay Area.

To combat the heat and protect residents, South County cities set up cooling centers and stations.

Cooling centers were offered over the weekend at the Greenfield Civic Center, where residents could grab a bottle of water inside the Council Chambers, and the King City Recreation Center on Division Street.

The King City location provided an air-conditioned room, water and played Disney’s “Peter Pan” for residents.

Brooklyn Monroy and Avelina Ortiz, students from Chalone Peaks Middle School, came by the cooling center for community service hours for the school leadership team.

Monroy and Ortiz were joined by Maria Tirado and Fabian Hernandez, who came into the cooling center to get cool and refreshed on the hottest day of the Excessive Heat Warning on Saturday, Sept. 2. Temperatures in King City reached above 110 degrees.

The City of Gonzales also offered a “Cooling Station” on Friday in the Council Chambers. There were also cooling centers at the Gonzales Joint Use Gym on Saturday and Sunday, and the Gonzales Community Pool was open to help residents cool down.

In Soledad, the city partnered with South County YMCA and the Soledad Unified School District to provide air conditioning and water for residents during the projected warmest peak of the day from 1 to 6 p.m.

According to a news release by PG&E, their meteorologists were forecasting one of the hottest stretches overall in the past 20 years to hit the Central Coast. PG&E was expecting energy usage to increase over the Labor Day weekend, which could cause stress on the power grid and lead to some outage activity.

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