Potomac News Online | Heat hits the county fair

SPECIAL REPORT –  Hog Wild at the county fair

Melissa Linkenhoker, an attendant at a fresh lemonade stand at the Prince William County Fair, couldn’t do anything but endure the heat Sunday.

She had a small fan in the booth where she sold lemonade and corn dogs, but it was of little help.

“I’m just trying to stay as still as possible and drink a lot water,” the 20-year-old Baltimore woman said.

Civil War re-enactors Jean and David Sard were in the same predicament, but they were wearing more clothes.

After all, re-enactors can’t just go about in shorts and T-shirts.

Jean Sard, 45, drank lemonade from a pewter cup, used a folding fan to stave off the heat and blessed the occasional breeze that blew through their tent Sunday.

David Sard , 42, couldn’t use a paper folding fan since that would have been out of character.

“He fans himself with his hat,” said Jean Sard of Trappe, Md.

“I just take ice-cold drinks and try to stay in the shade,” David Sard said.

With heat indexes hovering around 100 both days, volunteers from Stonewall Jackson Volunteer Fire Department had their hands full at the fair this weekend.

On Saturday, 18 heat-stressed people visited the first aid station at the fair where the fire volunteers treated them, said Chief Jeff Harding.

The fire department took one of the people to the hospital for treatment, Harding said.

“Yesterday they were dropping like flies,” Harding said Sunday, when temperatures were a little cooler, but not by much.

People started showing up at the first aid center at about mid-day. Volunteers gave them bottled water and let them cool off in the air conditioning.

“Until the sun goes down and the heat breaks a little bit, they’re stacked in here,” Harding said.

Fewer people attended the fair Sunday. Heat may have been a factor.

Harding said many of the patients the volunteers saw Saturday were children.

“Kids can’t cope as well as adults can,” he said.

Enoch Chow, who manned a booth for Independence Air, handed out paper fans on wooden sticks to anyone who wanted one.

“Just trying to help people – give them fans, make them our friends,” the 18-year-old Herndon man said.

The National Weather Service office in Sterling reported that the temperature Saturday was 95, with a heat index of 101 degrees. Sunday’s temperature cooled to 94 with a heat index of 100 degrees.

The temperature soared to 101 on Aug. 13, 1881, before people knew enough to complain about heat indexes.

On Aug. 14, 2002 the temperature was 99 degrees, the weather service reported.

SPECIAL REPORT –  Hog Wild at the county fair


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