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Multnomah County opening cooling centers to deal with expected heat wave

Cooling Centers to open in Multnomah County

Extreme heat can be very dangerous, especially for the most vulnerable in our community. With temperatures expected to reach the high 90s later this week and into the weekend, three cooling centers will open in Multnomah County to help seniors and people with disabilities and other health conditions stay safe.

Those in need of refuge from the hot weather can access cooling centers during the hottest parts of the day on Thursday, August 18; Friday, August 19; and Saturday, August 20. 

Cooling center locations and hours of operation:

Multnomah County Walnut Park Building, 5325 NE MLK Jr. Blvd., Portland
Thurs., Aug. 18, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Fri., Aug. 19, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Sat., Aug. 20, 2 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Multnomah County East Building, 600 NE 8th St., Gresham
Thurs., Aug. 18, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Fri., Aug. 19, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Sat., Aug. 20, 2 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Hollywood Senior Center, 1820 NE 40th Ave., Portland
Thurs., Aug. 18, 4:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Fri., Aug. 19, 4:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Sat., Aug. 20, 2 p.m. to 8 p.m.

People in immediate need of relief from the hot weather
may arrive to the cooling centers before opening hours
on Thursday and Friday.

 Transportation to the cooling centers can be arranged by calling Ride Connection at 503-226-0700. Advance reservations are encouraged.

 Neighbors can also help by checking in on elderly or disabled friends and relatives. Heat stroke or heat exhaustion are common conditions in hot weather. Higher temperatures also can place a dangerous strain on those with heart and other health issues.

Tips to staying cool:

  • Drink plenty of water, non-alcoholic and decaffeinated fluids. People with health conditions such as epilepsy, 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.

For additional tips, visit

Call for more information. The Multnomah County Aging, Disability and Veterans Services Helpline has resources for older adults and people with disabilities, including a list of senior centers, transportation services and 24-hour crisis intervention. Call 503-988-3646 or TTY at 503-988-3683.