Schenectady County

Schenectady county offers cooling sites with onslaught of heat

The exterior of the Phyllis Bornt Branch Library and Literacy Center located at 948 State St. The Bornt Branch Library is one of the places offering refuge from the high temperatures.
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The exterior of the Phyllis Bornt Branch Library and Literacy Center located at 948 State St. The Bornt Branch Library is one of the places offering refuge from the high temperatures.

It’s going to be hot and officials across Schenectady are providing residents with tips and options to stay cool. 

Today (SATURDAY) and Sunday are expected to reach low to mid-90s, according to the National Weather Service, which has issued a heat advisory in the area from noon to 8 p.m. Saturday. 

“The first 90 degree day of the year is expected ….. and we may set record high temperatures with the latest forecast calling for low to mid 90s in eastern NY,” the National Weather Service station in Albany tweeted Friday. “Here’s a look at the record highs for May 21. Albany may even [see] its earliest 95 degree day!”

The high temperatures caused Schenectady County officials to announce six cooling locations where people can go. 

In Niskayuna hundreds of people are expected to be outside for hours enjoying Niska-Day, at first with a parade in town and then entertainment and food at Craig Elementary. 

“All tents will have large capacity fans to keep everyone cool,” said Rachel Rourke, who co-chairs the event with her husband Jay Rourke. “Please make sure to hydrate, wear sunscreen, hats, and light clothing. There are EMS and firefighters on hand should anyone need assistance.”

Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate, said Dale Lingenfelter, the fire chief of Niskayuna Fire District 1. 

He also said people shouldn’t try to do so much at once and if they are participating in activities in the heat to take breaks. 

He also said to avoid alcohol and caffeine and look for shaded areas. 

Niskayuna Supervisor Jaime Puccioni said key town employees will not open the splash pad this weekend, but will assist with Niska-Day. 

“We have a lot of resources devoted to helping N-CAP/Niska-Day Committee with the event during this week and going into Saturday,” she said. “As it turns out, we cannot both support Niska-Day in the way the town expects and open the Splash Pad safely.  While it may seem like a simple endeavor, the splash pad was winterized and the opening requires significant components to be reinstalled.”

The splash pad is set to open June 1, she said. 

In the city, the splash pad at Tribute Park on Eastern Avenue will be open, said Alex Sutherland, the Schenectady’s director of operations.

If someone begins to feel dizzy, light-headed and has trouble breathing they should call 911, Lingenfelter said. 

People also should leave children, vulnerable adults or pets in vehicles, which can reach very high temperatures when it’s hot, said the state Department of Motor Vehicles, the state Health Department and the Office of Children and Family Services in a press release. 

People or pets left in a hot car can die in minutes from a heatstroke, said Mary Bassett, the state health commissioner. 

“We know that a disrupted routine is a primary risk factor for accidentally leaving a child in a car,” said Sheila J. Poole, the commissioner of the Office of Children and Family Services. “Some people’s routines are still disrupted due to the pandemic, making it more important than ever to check the back seat. Put something there that you need: keys, your purse or briefcase, or your cell phone to help you remember to look before you lock. Doing so could save a child’s life.”

Here are the list of cooling places in Schenectady County: 

Hon. Karen B. Johnson Library, 99 Clinton St. 

10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday

Noon to 4 p.m. Sunday

Bornt Library Branch, 948 State St.

10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday

Glenville Library Branch, 20 Glenridge Rd

10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday

Mont Pleasant Library Branch, 1036 Crane St.

10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday

Rotterdam Branch Library, 1100 N. Westcott Road

10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday

Bethesda House of Schenectady, 834 State St. 

10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday

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