During the recent heatwave the North Gilliam County Health District organized and operated the Arlington Cooling Center. The cooling center provided comfort and assistance to community members as well as a few off the freeway with car trouble. The center, operated from June 25 – June 30, offered a cool relaxing environment, water, snacks, games, movies, lunches occasionally, and even a few showers to the public.
I have to hand it to some of the people in Arlington, three or four phone calls at 7:00 Thursday night, and I had a building, volunteers, and more supplies than we could handle. We even had to turn some down (keep them handy, summer just started). Friday morning we were setting up the station, and we opened on Saturday morning. A great response in a short amount of time.
Normally you see cooling centers mostly in larger population areas. But even in a small community like Arlington, we have community members who have needs. During this last heatwave we lost 63 lives in Oregon. That is outrageous, when you think that many of those lives might have been saved with so little effort. Cooling centers supported by local governments, and organizations, checking on friends, and neighbors, and community awareness all make a difference. The Health District wanted to make a difference and do our part.
We were very lucky in our community and county, this time. I hope we can all pull together in future events, not just communities, but county wide.
Lots of help from the community offering their time, and business providing everything from water, snacks, food discounts, the facilities, and even free high speed internet.
and a special thanks to Abigail Osman for all her work!
City of Arlington
Arlington Golf Course
Big River Pizza
River’s Edge Deli
Gilliam County Sheriff’s Office
North Gilliam Medic
Port of Arlington
Arlington TV Coop