By Rebekkah McKalsen, Contributing Writer
OSWEGO, NY – Central New York is heating up this week with highs in the 90s – and maybe, just maybe some areas will see100 degrees.
An excessive heat warning has been issued by the National Weather Service for Thursday (July 21) afternoon, with an expected high of around 99 degrees.
With the heat index (a combination of the air temperature and humidity that more accurately portrays how hot it feels outside) expected to reach 108 degrees in certain areas of Central New York, the question is – how can residents keep cool?
At Oliver Paine’s Greenhouse, located in Granby, Jackie said with a laugh, “Seriously? I’m standing in a 100-degree greenhouse right now!”
While the temperature in the greenhouse is less than desirable, Jackie noted that everyone has been making efforts to stay hydrated.
I’ve been drinking a lot of water, and Oliver bought popsicles for everyone so that we can take a break when we need to. The sugar helps to even [us] out.”
But the flowers need more water in this heat as well, and it’s taking all of the energy that the workers at Paine’s can muster to keep up with them, she noted.
Josephine Godfrey at Godfrey’s Last Stand in Phoenix said that they have a general strategy whenever it reaches a certain temperature.
The field workers are called in earlier to work the mornings and then they are sent home before the temperatures hit their peak.
Michaela Decker, who works at the farm picking the various fruits and vegetables, was sent home early on in the week to avoid the heat and said that she has been avoiding going out while at home as much as possible.
“It’s not exciting… I’m staying inside where the fan is, eating ice and now I’m going to Wal-Mart where the AC is,” she said.
Godfrey said that, while the field workers have been sent home quite a bit this week, the stand has remained open.
“We putter around and do stuff that we normally have no time for,” she noted. “We try to avoid physical labor as much as possible until (it cools off).”
Thursday, which is supposed to be well into the 90s, will likely be one of those days where workers in the stand “just sit in front of the fan and wait until the day ends,” Godfrey said.
Tony Pauldine, a general contractor based in Oswego, noted a similar strategy to Godfrey’s; “We have been starting a little bit earlier in the morning, especially the roofing crews, and getting out a few hours earlier,” he said.
In general, the crews are dealing with the heat fairly well, he said, adding, “You know, the work goes on. But, I am not looking forward to tomorrow (Thursday)!”
Many residents are also turning towards pools, despite the fact that summer is coming to a close.
Cannon Pools sales manager Dave said, “(Business) has actually been pretty good. It’s been way better than normal for this time of year.”