It wasn’t an ocean side seat, but Brian Streit had one of Mankato’s better outdoor spots for relief from the tropical weather that sent the lower half of Minnesota into an excessive heat warning Sunday.
He was sitting on a beach just inches away from the cool waters of “The Pit,” also known as Hiniker Pond. Temperatures were lingering around 90 degrees, but the humidity was pushing the heat index over 100. The weather was as hot and humid in Mankato as it was anywhere else in the world Sunday.
Streit’s daughter and son were spending most of their time in the chilly spring-fed water. He was relaxing in a chair and sipping a beer.
“We were here at 11:30,” Streit said. “We knew it was going to be hot.”
Weather forecasters are predicting it’s going to stay hot through Wednesday, with high humidity, daytime temperatures in the 90s, overnight lows only dipping into the upper 70s and heat index readings as high as 115 degrees. The expected string of hot days and warm nights prompted the National Weather Service to issue warnings for people to be aware of the danger for heat-related illnesses.
Those illnesses weren’t sending too many people to the Emergency Room at the Mayo Clinic Health System in Mankato this weekend, said Dr. Ronak Shah. He’s expecting that to change during the work week when construction crews, and others with jobs that keep them outdoors, get back to work.
There was a spike in Emergency Room visits earlier this summer when the humidity and temperatures were high. Those visits can usually be avoided by staying hydrated, only going outside if it’s necessary and taking time to rest somewhere cool if you are outside for long periods of time, Shah said.
“People tend to underestimate how much water is really needed to stay hydrated,” he said. “It’s just amazing in this heat and humidity how much water is lost through your sweat.
“People also want to keep working and they don’t get out of the heat enough.”
Cramping, feeling very hot, tingling fingers and becoming confused are some of the signs that the heat is becoming harmful to your body, Shah said.
The extreme heat didn’t keep Nelson Cuellar and his team from finishing a soccer game at Land of Memories Park Sunday. They did take extra breaks before and after half time to guzzle water, then pour some of the cool fluid over their heads.
Their were 15 people on his team. When the game was over, seven cases of water were gone. The team, which includes players from Madelia and St. James, planned to stop at a downtown bar to eat and cool off before heading home.
Streit said the weather isn’t going to keep him inside today. A friend has invited him to the Twins’ afternoon baseball game, so he’s planning to spend another afternoon in the sun.
He’s already used to the heat. He spent five hours watching a MoonDogs triple-header in Mankato Saturday night as the heat and humidity were moving into the area.
“It was sticky, but there was a breeze,” Streit said. “I was wet, but I was comfortable.”