Boulder City Magazine® August 2007 Issue
by Patty Sullivan
Recreation Program Coordinator
Boulder City Parks & Recreation Department
It's Hot - Stay Cool!
Family stories seem to surface in my thoughts as the hot summer months are upon us. When my grandparents moved to this area in 1931, they lived in Ragtown, the encampment on the banks of the Colorado River.
Boulder City Magazine®
|While most people lived in tents, my family was not fortunate enough to own one. They were from the mountains of Colorado and had wool blankets. They hung the blankets on lines and made their shelter as best they could. Buckets of water were hauled from the Colorado River to put water on the tents to provide evaporative cooling.
Now imagine, although these were harsh living conditions for a family with young children, there were some folks even less fortunate. There was one man called Johnny Behind The Rock who had no manmade shelter, he simply moved with the shadow of a large boulder that was nearby.
Evaporative cooling was the only means of staying cool that was available to us when I was a girl growing up in Boulder City. In fact, it wasn’t until about seven years ago that we finally installed central air conditioning in our house. When I was young, we used to go to Lake Mead at sunset and do what we called swim the barrels. At one time, there were a series of big metal drums anchored to the bottom of the lake that identified the swim beach. As a part of our weekly routine, we would swim the barrels. Sometimes we would crawl up on the barrels, no easy feat even as a kid in great shape, and ride them like a bucking bronco. If it was windy and the waves were high, we got bucked off. This activity cooled us off, relaxed us and provided great exercise.
When it’s this hot, the best way to get exercise is either in the water, an indoor, air conditioned activity, or to be active during the early morning or after dark hours. As it gets hotter, I find myself heading for water.
I encourage everyone to find a summer activity that will provide the kind of benefits that only physical activity can. The Community Fitness Center at Adams Blvd. Community Park provides a variety of ways to exercise in an air conditioned environment. The pool and racquetball complex offers a variety of swimming classes and open swim time and the racquetball courts are air conditioned. Most of our classes are in an indoor, air-conditioned facility.
688 Wells Rd #A
Boulder City, Nevada 89005
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