Lincoln residents take refuge from heat at free city facilities

Mayor Chris Beutler is encouraging City residents seeking relief from the heat to visit one of the air-conditioned City facilities open to the public free of charge.

A popular pick with kids is the Trago Park Sprayground at 22nd and U streets.  It's a place where you can have fun, be silly and get wet.  Carissa Valenta of Lincoln took her kids there Tuesday afternoon.  She says it's a great way to get out of the house.  “It's our first time this year.  It's just nice to get away. We appreciate that the city has put out something for free for us all and we get to stay a little bit cool in the meantime.”

The Sprayground is open daily from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Another place to take the kids, the “F” Street Recreation Center at 1225 “F” Street.  It's open daily at no cost from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. weekdays, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 1 to 6 p.m. Sunday.

The city's libraries and senior centers are also open.

The libraries have computers with Internet access, board games, newspapers and magazines and of course, the latest titles.  Anthony Oler of Lincoln was at a library on Tuesday and says, “I can go and sit down, read a paper, or go and find a book to read for when I get home.  It gets me out of the heat and gets my mind on other things.”

 Lincoln City Libraries are open and available during the following days and times:

  • Bennett Martin, 14th and “N” streets; 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday; noon to 6 p.m. Sunday.
  • Anderson Branch, Fremont Street and Touzalin Avenue; 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday; noon to 8 p.m. Sunday.
  • Bethany Branch, 1810 N. Cotner Blvd.; 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday; closed on Sunday.
  • Eiseley Branch, 1530 Superior St.; 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday; noon to 8 p.m. Sunday.
  • Gere Branch, 56th Street and Normal Boulevard; 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday; noon to 8 p.m. Sunday.
  • South Branch, 27th and South streets; 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday; noon to 8 p.m. Sunday.
  • Walt Branch, 6701 S. 14th St.; 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday; noon to 8 p.m. Sunday.
  • Williams Branch Library, 5000 Mike Scholl St.; 2 to 6 p.m. daily Monday through Sunday.

The senior centers also offer plenty to do, including group activities.  The Lake Street Senior Center also offers a full meal.  Kelle Brandt volunteers there and says, “There are so many wonderful activities for the people.  They can meet some new friends and it's good place to stay cool.”

Aging Partners' Senior Centers are open during the following dates and times:

  • Belmont Senior Center, 1234 Judson; 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday, Tuesday and Thursday.
  • Downtown Senior Center, 10th and “O” streets; 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.
  • Lake Street Senior Center, 2400 S. 11th St.; 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday through Friday.
  • Maxey Senior Center, 2032 “U” St.; 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesday and Friday.
  • Northeast Senior Center, 6310 Platte; 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.
  • Aging Partners Health and Wellness Center, 233 S. 10th St.; 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday

Also, in an effort to help residents deal with the extreme heat temperatures, the Cornhusker Chapter of the American Red Cross will provide volunteers to help staff Belmont Recreation Center, 1234 Judson, from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday.  The center normally closes during the week at 6:30 p.m.

The “F” Street Recreation Center, 1225 “F” Street, is open daily at no cost from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. weekdays, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 1 to 6 p.m. Sunday.  The Trago Park Sprayground at 22nd and “U” streets provides water recreation at no cost from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily.  An activation button turns on the water spray and play features.

 Aging Partners' Senior Centers are open during the following dates and times:

  • Belmont Senior Center, 1234 Judson; 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday, Tuesday and Thursday.
  • Downtown Senior Center, 10th and “O” streets; 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.
  • Lake Street Senior Center, 2400 S. 11th St.; 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday through Friday.
  • Maxey Senior Center, 2032 “U” St.; 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesday and Friday.
  • Northeast Senior Center, 6310 Platte; 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.
  • Aging Partners Health and Wellness Center, 233 S. 10th St.; 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Lincoln-Lancaster County Health officials issued a hot weather alert on Friday cautioning citizens to take steps to prepare for and deal with the extreme temperatures.  It's available on the City website at  lincoln.ne.gov.