KANSAS CITY, Mo. - With temperatures expected to hit 100 degrees Wednesday and highs forecasted in triple digits for much of the next week, there are dozens of area cooling centers open for those who do not have access to air conditioning, or for any other reason need a break from the heat.
* All 30 branches of the Mid-Continent Public Library system are acting as cooling centers during this hot summer. All branches are equipped with air conditioning, free computer access and Wi-Fi, and refreshing water fountains. Users are encouraged to get a library card, but the doors are open to all members of the public.
Locations are scattered throughout Jackson, Platte and Clay counties. To find the one nearest you, visit www.mymcpl.org/locations
* All eight Kansas City-area Salvation Army centers will double as community cooling shelters.
The centers will be open from 8 a.m. to at least 5 p.m. seven days a week until the warning is lifted. Salvation Army volunteers will also provide cold drinks to the homeless and provide fans and air conditioning units to people in need through its Fan Club program.
The following locations will serve as cooling centers during the heat warning:
6111 East 129th St., Grandview, Mo.
14700 East Truman Rd., Independence, Mo.
3013 East 9th St., Kansas City, Mo.
6618 East Truman Rd., Kansas City, Mo.
5306 N. Oak Trafficway, Kansas City, Mo.
500 West 39th St., Kansas City, Mo.
6723 State Avenue, Kansas City, Kan.
420 East Santa Fe, Olathe, Kan.
* In Johnson County, Kan., the Department of Health and Environment has opened up all 13 library branches as cooling centers during normal business hours (which vary by location).
Call (913) 826-4600 to check hours of operation for your nearest library branch, or visit the Library web site at www.jocolibrary.org
* Area YMCAs are open to the public only during excessive heat warnings.
Activities vary by location. To find a location near you, call (816) 561-9622 or visit www.kansascityymca.org
* In Blue Springs, Mo., residents can find refuge from the extreme heat at Vesper Hall, 400 N.W. Vesper St., during normal operating hours of Monday/Wednesday/Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Tuesday/Thursday from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m.
* In Liberty, Mo., the Community Center, 1600 S. Withers Road, will be open this summer anytime temperatures reach 90 degrees or above during regular business hours.
* In Belton, Mo., the High Blue Wellness Center, located at Wallace Park, 16400 N. Mullen Rd., will be open to the public as a cooling center from 2 to 7 p.m.