August is typically HOT in Utah, with temperatures in the Salt Lake Valley often in the 90s, and temperatures in other parts of the state well above 100 degrees. Don’t just hide in your house, pushing your electric bill ever higher. Get out there and have some fun! Just find a way to do it and cool off at the same time. Here are 11 ideas.
1) Set Up a Spot at Your Local Splash Pad
I recently discovered that many Utah towns have installed splash pads at their local city parks. If your city has one, grab a couple towels, some sunscreen and a picnic lunch and spend an afternoon chilling out with your neighbors.
2) Be Cool at the Library
The library isn’t just for book nerds (who might be the coolest people in Utah, anyway!). If you have little kids, check your local library for storytime and other free activities. The public library system is a great source for all kinds of entertainment, from books to DVDs and music.
3) Try A Different Movie Experience
A blockbuster movie on a hot summer day is a special treat, but you can expand your horizons by trying something a little different. Catch the latest independent movie or foreign film at The Broadway or The Tower in Salt Lake City, or Art House Cinema in Ogden. If you love the idea of sipping a beer while watching a flick (and you’re at least 21 years old), try Brewvies Cinema Pub in Salt Lake.
4) Head for the Lake
Which one, you say? Any of Utah’s 647 lakes will suffice! If you’ve got a bunch of spare cash lying around, rent yourself and your closest 15 friends a houseboat on Lake Powell. If your budget is a little tighter, just grab some sunscreen, a towel and a snack and head for the lake closest to you. It doesn’t matter where you live in Utah -- you’re probably within an hour or a decent-sized body of water.. If you REALLY want to cool off fast, head for some higher elevation lakes -- one splash in Bear Lake and you’ll be chilled right out.
5) Go Ice Skating
There’s nothing like a sheet of ice to cool you down. Grab a jacket (you’ll need one!) and head to your local ice rink. In the Salt Lake Area: Acord (WVC), SLC Sports Complex (Guardsman Way), County Ice Center (Murray), Olympic Oval (West Jordan). In Ogden: The Ice Sheet (Harrison Blvd). In Bountiful: South Davis Rec. Center. In Provo: Peaks Ice Arena. In Park City: Ice Arena (Gillmore Way). If you’re not a very good skater, no worries. Every time you fall on your butt you’ll get even colder!
6) Play at Lagoon
It’s hot while you stand in line, but once you hop on Wicked, Colossus, or the new Cannibal Mega Coaster, the wind through your hair cools you off -- plus you’ll be so excited/terrified/happy that you’ll completely forget about being hot. Of course, you can always get soaked on Rattlesnake Rapids or the Log Flume, and spend some time at Lagoon-A-Beach for a real drenching.
7) Sleep in the Great Outdoors
Pick a camping spot with some elevation and you’ll find much cooler air. Utah’s High Uintas is downright chilly at night -- even in August. While it’s much cooler up there, don’t forget your sunscreen - you can still get sunburned.
8) Learn a Little at One of Utah’s Museums
Summer is for fun...but you might as well learn something at the same time! Utah has more than a hundred museums, all across the state. Take the family, make it a date or go all by yourself...most museums have excellent air-conditioning.
9) Strap on Your Life Vest and Go Whitewater Rafting
Wanna see some beautiful scenery, get soaked and raise your pulse a few notches? You can go whitewater rafting on Utah’s Green and Colorado Rivers. Guided rafting trips fit most budgets -- from a short trip to an overnight excursion. If the thought of barrelling down a river on a rubber raft terrify you, choose a slower-paced river like the Provo River and hop on a float for a lazy afternoon.
10) Bury Your Face in a Frozen Treat
We Utahns LOVE our ice cream. If you seriously don’t know where to go to get some, check out our list of 11 Ice Cream Shops around the state or make your own. Don’t forget to indulge in at least a few shaved ice treats, too!
11) Hit the Ski Resorts
Just because you can’t ski/board in August is no reason to avoid Utah’s ski resorts. The temperature is cooler and there’s plenty of great mountain biking and hiking at all of them. You’ll also find alpine slides, zip lines, outdoor concerts and more.