Stay cool! UPDATED: Cooling centers, splash pads, water parks all over RI for heat dome days

From today through Friday, and perhaps through the weekend, a “heat dome” will cover most of New England, and in Rhode Island primarily the northern and western areas, away from the coast. While some schools in surrounding states have closed, all of Rhode Island still in session appears to be staying open. Things could change as the days – and heat – accumulates.

According to the RI EMA, “Heat illnesses have the potential to be life-threatening. That is why it is important to make sure you and your family are prepared to beat the heat. Download the Extreme Heat Safety Guide to learn how you can prepare for a heat wave and extreme heat. The Extreme Heat Safety Guide also contains information about heat illnesses and how to treat them.”


In most cities, public libraries are your best bet. Some will be staying open until early evening. Check on your library’s website, or call them or the city/town hall.

Other ideas: water parks and pools, shopping malls, grocery stores, movie theaters, senior centers. Examples from Pawtucket and Providence of what you’ll find more cities and towns doing.

From the RI Department of Health:

Normally, when you get hot, your body cools itself by sweating. However, when it is very hot and humid, sweating isn’t enough, and your body temperature can rise very quickly. High temperatures can cause heat stroke, heat exhaustion, or heat cramps. Certain populations are at increased risk for heat-related illness during periods of extreme heat. These populations include babies and young children, people who are pregnant, children and teens with asthma, older adults, people who work outdoors, and people with chronic medical conditions (such as heart disease, diabetes, and obesity).

When you are outside during extreme heat: 

  • Stay out of the direct sun. Try to stay in shaded areas.
  • Wear a hat with a brim and wear sunscreen for protection.
  • Drink plenty of water and avoid alcohol and caffeine. 
  • Pace yourself when you exercise.
  • Schedule outdoor events early in the morning, when it is cooler and the air quality is better.
  • Wear light-colored and light-weight clothing.

When you are inside during extreme heat: 

  • Use air conditioning or fans, windows, and shades or curtains to keep your house cool.
  • Take cool showers or baths. Avoid cooking hot food indoors when the day is at its hottest.
  • Drink plenty of water and avoid alcohol and caffeine.
  • Never leave children, pets, or older adults in unattended cars during periods of extreme heat. 

Watch for warning signs: 

Check on friends, family, and neighbors during periods of extreme heat. Signs of heat exhaustion include heavy sweating; cold, pale, and clammy skin; nausea or vomiting, tiredness; dizziness; or headache. If someone is showing signs of heat exhaustion, move them to a cool place and remove unnecessary clothing; put a cool, wet cloths on their body (neck, under the arms and groin); use a fan; and have them sip water or a sports drink. Call medical help (911) if symptoms get worse or last longer than one hour. 

Cooling centers:

Some cities and towns have cooling centers open to those who need shelter during periods of extreme heat. To find a cooling center, call 2-1-1 or visit:

Extreme Heat Safety Tips from the City of Providence/PEMA:

During extreme temperatures, heat-related illnesses are possible with outdoor exposure and strenuous activity, and the effects are cumulative over consecutive days. The elderly, youth and individuals with illnesses are especially vulnerable to high heat conditions. Providence is asking residents to take precautions and are providing the following tips and suggestions. 

·         Stay indoors as much as possible and limit exposure to the sun. 

·         Drink plenty of water, even if you do not feel thirsty; avoid drinks with caffeine. 

·         Limit your outdoor activities to the evening hours if possible. 

·         Wear loose-fitting clothing light in color; wear brimmed hats and sunscreen SPF 15 or higher. 

·         Use a buddy system when working outdoors and take frequent breaks to cool down. 

·         Check on your neighbors, especially the elderly and people with special needs. 

·         Do not leave children or pets in cars. 

·         Do not open fire hydrants, it is against the law; report any open hydrants to the fire department. 

·         Recognize the signs and symptoms of heat-related emergencies. 

City of Pawtucket reminds residents of Cooling Center locations

The following local buildings will be open to the public during the times listed:

  • The Pawtucket Police Department Headquarters lobby at 121 Roosevelt Avenue is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
  • The Pawtucket Public Library at 13 Summer Street is available Monday through Thursday from 9:00 a.m. to 8:45 p.m.; and Friday and Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 4:45 p.m.
  • Leon Mathieu Senior Center at 420 Main Street is available Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
  • The Blackstone Valley Visitor Center at 175 Main Street is available Monday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
  • Open Doors Warming and Cooling Shelter at 1139 Main Street is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Non-emergency telephone numbers for police (401-727-9100) and fire (401-725-1424) are available for people affected by the heat to call if they may need to arrange for transportation.

Seniors with heat-related concerns may also contact the staff at the Leon Mathieu Senior Center at 401-728-7582.


City of Providence Early Opening of Cooling Centers, Splashpads and Water Parks

Due to extreme heat conditions expected June 18, 19, 20 and 21 splashpads and water parks will open two weeks early and cooling centers will be activated.  

Splashpads and water parks will be open from 4:00 PM – 7:00 PM on Tuesday, June 18, Thursday, June 20 and Friday, June 21 and 12:00 PM -7:00 PM on Wednesday, June 19. Below is a full list of water park and splashpad locations that will be open to all:

Park Location 
Al Carrington Water Park 64 Richardson St. 
Billy Taylor Water Park 124 Camp St. 
Sackett Street Water Park 100 Sackett St. 
Harriet & Sayles Water Park 375 Sayles St. 
General Street Water Park 11 West Dr. 
George West Water Park 1266 Chalkstone Ave. 
Fargnoli Water Park 945 Smith St. 
Fox Point Water Park 505 Wickenden St. 
A. Vincent Igliozzi Rec Center 675 Plainfield St. 
Wallace Street Park 1 Wallace St. 
Pastore Park Corner of Knight St. & Tell St. 
Joslin Recreation Center 17 Hyatt St. 

Only the following libraries will be open as cooling centers on Wednesday, June 19, due to the holiday:  

Olneyville Library: 1 Olneyville Square, 401-421-4084 – Wednesday: 11:30am – 5:30pm 

South Providence Library: 441 Prairie Avenue, 401-467-2619  – Wednesday: 11:30am – 5:30pm 

The following cooling centers will be opened at their respective hours through the week:  


Emmanuel House: 239 Public St, 401-421-7888 – Tuesday-Saturday: 9:00am – 5:00pm 

Federal Hill House: 9 Courtland Street – Tuesday-Friday: 9:00am – 5:00pm 

Providence Rescue Mission: 627 Cranston Street – Open 24/7 during high heat conditions 

Crossroads: 160 Broad Street – Open 24/7 during high heat conditions 


Mt. Pleasant Library: 315 Academy Avenue, 401-272-0106 

Tuesday: 9:30am – 8:00pm  

Thursday: 9:30am – 8:00pm 

Friday: 1:00 pm – 5:30pm 

Saturday: 9:30am – 5:30pm  

Olneyville Library: 1 Olneyville Square, 401-421-4084 

Tuesday: 9:30am – 5:30pm  

Thursday: 9:30am – 5:30pm 

Friday: 1:00pm – 5:30pm 

Providence Public Library: 150 Empire Street, 401-455-8000 

Tuesday: 8:30am –7:00pm 

Thursday: 1:00pm –5:00pm 

Friday: 10:00 am –5:00pm 

Saturday: 8:30am – 4:00pm 

Rochambeau Library: 708 Hope Street, 401-272-3780 

Tuesday: 9:30am – 8:00pm  

Thursday: 9:30am – 8:00pm 

Friday: 1:00 pm –5:30pm 

Saturday: 9:30am – 5:30pm 

Smith Hill Library: 31 Candace Street, 401-272-4140 

Tuesday: 9:30am – 5:30pm  

Thursday: 9:30am – 5:30pm 

Friday: 1:00pm-5:30pm 

South Providence Library: 441 Prairie Avenue, 401-467-2619 

Tuesday: 1:00pm – 8:00pm 

Thursday: 9:30am – 5:30pm 

Friday: 1:00pm – 5:30pm 

Wanskuck Library: 233 Veazie Street, 401-274-4145 

Tuesday: 9:30am – 5:30pm 

Thursday: 1:00pm – 8:00pm 

Friday: 1:00pm – 5:30pm 

Washington Park Library: 1316 Broad Street, 401-781-3136 

Tuesday: 9:30am – 5:30pm 

Thursday: 1:00pm – 8:00pm 

Friday: 1:00pm – 5:30pm 

Town of Coventry, RI

Cooling centers: (not open Juneteenth, 6/19)

  • Coventry Public Library at 1672 Flat River Road — open 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday
  • Coventry Senior and Resource Center at 50 Wood St. — 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Thursday.

Anyone wishing to utilize free cooling center services should follow the below procedures and guidelines: 

·         Only certified service animals with documentation of status paperwork will be permitted inside cooling centers. No other pets will be allowed inside the facility. 

·         Free bottled water will be available at all cooling centers.  

For more information, please visit the City’s website

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  1. test on June 18, 2024 at 10:23 am


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