San Diegans beat the heat at designated ‘Cool Zones’

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SAN DIEGO – Life seemed to be imitating art within the San Diego County Libraries. A librarian pulled ‘Hot City’ from the bookshelves to share with readers.

It’s the story of two children who try to beat the heat on a hot summer day by kicking back at a local library.

That was the reality at Malcolm X library Saturday.

“I  came here to escape the heat as well as progress in what I do,” John Nelson said. He took advantage of the hot temperatures outside as the perfect excuse to study for his higher education classes in the cool library.

It is one of about 100 designated Cool Zones in San Diego County. They’re designed as places for the elderly and others to go on hot days.

They became the perfect stop for San Diegans Saturday as the National Weather Service issued a heat advisory until Monday night.

Ann Tolch-Dempsey and her husband said the can’t afford an air conditioner so they are thankful for the cool zones around town.

“Those with less financial resources are hit first and they`re really hit hardest,” she said.

Zerihun Tensly agreed with her. “It’s really very hot. I don’t have AC, so that’s why I just came [to the library]. I have four kids so I’m cool here, that’s why I am here,” he said.

But others decided to beat the heat another way. Instead of diving into books, they dove right into the water at Mission Bay.

At the same time, others braved the heat just long enough to snag a cold treat. The line was out the door at some frozen yogurt stores, but worth waiting in for a lick of something that would cool them off from the inside out.

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