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People can feel safer escaping indoors during the heatwave as coronavirus restrictions are lifted

June 15th is the big day where many coronavirus restrictions lift and with extreme heat through the week ahead, many are escaping indoors.

“Just understand what the heat does out here,” said Captain Nathan Gunkel with the Palm Springs Fire Department.

News Channel 3's Taban Sharifi went to a park and tested out how hot those surfaces are. With a temperature outdoors of about 105 degrees, a swing set surface recorded a temperature of 162 degrees.

The Westfield Mall in Palm Desert will be home to numerous events and activities through the summertime where people can escape the heat. “This is a very safe space,” said Jennie Rayner, board chair with Living Free Animal Sanctuary. One of the spaces in the mall will be hosted by them. Every Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. - 4 p.m. they will have it open for families to come hangout, relax, learn about pet adoptions, and engage in activities. “This space is really a community space for people to come and relax. We have kids crafts. We are going to have animals for adoption,” said Rayner. Saturday, June 19th, they will be bringing kittens to the facility.

“Coming from outside and coming into the AC is such a relief," said Ashley Acosta, Coachella Valley resident and visitor to the mall. Acosta and her family were visiting, coloring, and saying hello to the rescued dog that was there.

Detailed list of events at Westfield Mall throughout the summer

Another facility within the mall that opened back up for the first time Tuesday was Camp Westfield. “Over the last year it’s been mostly empty but now we are starting to be able to utilize it again for three days a week and each week will have a theme, this week is Star Wars,” said Dallas Williams, the YMCA program director. Every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 1 p.m. - 3 p.m. parents and their kids are welcome to join the activities at Camp Westfield. It's $5 for the kids and they are able to be dropped off for those two hours if parents want to roam the mall. “The desert heat, especially with the way it’s been this week. For them to come inside and still be able to run around, we’ve got enough room for them to move around,” said Williams.

Some other places that are great for kids this summer include:
- The Kids Clubhouse
- My Gym
- Get Air

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Taban Sharifi

Taban Sharifi is a Meteorologist and Reporter with KESQ News Channel 3, The Desert’s News & Weather Leader. Learn more about Taban here.


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