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Heat hacks: How to keep yourself and your pets cool if you don't have AC!

A woman cools off at the Glassell Park Pool on June 28th, 2013.
Mae Ryan/KPCC
A woman cools off at the Glassell Park Pool on June 28th, 2013.

This post was originally published July 2014.

Grab an ice cream, hit the beach or just do nothing because, frankly, it's hot out this week.

Los Angeles County Health Officer has declared a Heat Alert with high temps forecasted for the Pomona area on Thursday, July 24 through Friday, July 25. Meanwhile, downtown L.A. will reach a high of 91 degrees and the San Gabriel Valley will reach a high of 97 degrees Thursday. 

Those heading to the beach will face hazardous rip currents in the surf zone, according to the National Weather Service

Sure, there are cooling centers scattered all throughout Southern California; we've got a map (click here) of those, which was issued by L.A. County Thursday. But, let's face it, they're not exactly cool (pun intended) — that's why we've curated a list of not-so-typical places to beat the heat this week and beyond.

For parents

Take the kids to a park with lots of shade or try a toy store.

Toy stores: 

Find more here

Parks with water: 

Find more about the best toy stores in Los Angeles here. To read about 10 cheap places (most of which involve water or air conditioning) to take your kids in SoCal this summer, click here

Don't forget to pack lots of water for you and your little ones. 

A cool place to stroll AND just relax

In extreme heat, the brisk air that escapes through supermarkets' sliding doors can be seen as a welcomed blessing. 

If you have time to spend, then enter an air-conditioned grocery store like Whole Foods, where you can buy this week's produce, try samples and sit down for a meal. Plus, there's Wi-Fi. 

Museums — such as the Santa Monica Museum of Art and the Griffith Observatory — are free and can provide a refreshing place to escape hot temps.

The Griffith Observatory

Other museums with FREE admission: 

Find more here

Work from home with no air conditioner?

While it's not wise to take your laptop to the pool, there are other options, like heading to a Starbucks or a public library. Local libraries — like the one in Huntington Beach — have quiet, scenic and air conditioned areas. 

Huntington Beach Public Library

And, like we mentioned above, there's always Whole Foods. Your one-stop-shop for groceries, dining, Internet, coffee and booze. 

What about Duke and Bella?

Don't forget: Pets are susceptible to heat-related health problems, too. Don't forget about them when planning cool down sessions.

Get out the kiddy pool, make some "pupsicles" (all you need is 1 ripe banana, 4 cups orange juice  and 1/2 cup plain yogurt) and just enjoy a day of lounging with your best friend.

Bonus tip: Try putting ice cubes in your pet's water bowl. It will surely quench the thirst of any parched throat. 

We hope this goes without saying: Please don't leave any animal in the car. 

Got a tip? Let us know in the comments or tweet @KPCC.