Summer 2016 begins: Here comes the heat

2016 likely not as hot as 2015

People enjoying the hot weather at the Columbia River. (KOIN)

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — After a record number of 90-degree days in 2015, looks like the Portland metro area may have its first one of 2016 this day.

KOIN 6 Meteorologist Sally Showman said Tuesday is a sunscreen-wearing, flip-flop walking, popsicle-eating type of day. Most places in the Willamette Valley will reach highs between 87 and 91.

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More hot weather is expected throughout the week, but especially on the weekend, with highs in the mid-90s Saturday. It’ll be a brutal day for people setting out blankets and chairs for the Starlight Parade Saturday night.

In 2015, Mother Nature was relentless. Wildfires raged across the Pacific Northwest in the most severe wildfire season in history. The sunny summer was the hottest on record with more days at or above 90 degrees than ever before.

Temperatures for the Summer of 2016 should be down from last year’s records, KOIN 6 Chief Meteorologist Kristen Van Dyke said.

One way to beat the heat is to head toward water.

The Columbia River has been popular Tuesday with families looking to enjoy the sun or cool off. The river is still pretty cool, but people were dipping their toes in or getting out on the water in boats and jet skis.

Downtown, splash parks like the one at Grant Park are the place to cool down. They’re turned on for the season and lots of little ones and their parents are out finding relief. One mother at the park has some tips for those bringing their kids out in the heat.

Splash parks are a great way for kids to cool off downtown on a hot day. (KOIN)
Splash parks are a great way for kids to cool off downtown on a hot day. (KOIN)

“Look out for heat exhaustion. Keep them hydrated,” Katelyn Johnson said. “Water and sunscreen are the top 2 things you can do. Hats, like a sunhat, which I should have on him but I don’t.”

Johnson said the Grant splash park will be especial popular because the pool is having work done and won’t be open for a while.

While not everyone loves the heat or the thought of 90 degree temperatures, some Portlanders are saying ‘bring it on.”

“As soon as Memorial Day happens, it’s summertime so everybody — come down here and let’s have some fun,” Jacob Hawkins said while cooling off at the Columbia River.

Portland Fire and Rescue hasn’t had any heat-related calls so far.

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