As the heat index climbed toward 100 degrees Tuesday, Rose City residents went for a swim at the or headed to , anything to find respite from the oppressive weather. to
McCools, famed for earning the best milkshake honor from New Jersey Monthly magazine, attracted a large daytime crowd, as a steady stream of families, camp groups and co-workers looked for a delicious way to cool down.
"We always have a big crowd in the evening, but there are definitely more people here during the day than usual," said manager Ryan Eschenroeder, in between serving scoops of chocolate chip and moose tracks.
Kelly Hutchinson of Harding was pleased that she was able to squeeze in enough time between shoe shopping and camp pickups to bring her three children to the store.
"I went swimming," said her six-year-old son, Charlie (small chocolate with chocolate chips and Reeces Pieces, in a cup), fresh from a dip during day camp. Sister Samantha, 9, (medium chocolate with chocolate chips in a cup) stayed in the air-conditioned car most of the day with mom, while big brother Griffin, 11, (chocolate milk shake with Oreos) kept cool on the ice at hockey camp.
McCool's regulars Samantha White, 15, and Courtney Formica, 14, both of Madison, ordered their usual: a chocolate chip milkshake for Formica and a root beer float for White.
"It's really hot," said White, agreeing with Formica that on especially hot days, an ice cream drink rather than a scoop offers the most relief from the heat.
Meanwhile, at the pool, 453 people had come to take a dip by 3 p.m. The numbers were similar to Monday, when more than 1,000 cooled off by day's end.
"We go through a lot of Icees," said snack shop staffer Andrea Chiarolanzio. The snack shop is run by Romanelli's Pizza, and thankfully the pizza is not cooked at the poolside location, which has no air conditioning.
An unscientific survey of guests found most were sticking to the range of Good Humor ice cream treats Tuesday, with the ice creamy visage of SpongeBob Squarepants a winner, likely due to the double treat of his bubble gum eyes.
Grace Lambrianakos, 8, Ronan Green, 8 and Dash Green, 7, all of Chatham, agreed that they had indeed beaten the heat. Dash said his favorite activity had been playing a game called Toothbrush in the pool.
"First you say a theme, and then someone else says a theme, maybe baseball, or soccer, " explained Lambrianakos. "Then you race."
Why the name? "At the end you shout "Toothpaste!" explained Lambrianakos.
Which goes to show that it's not so much how you play but where that makes all of the difference.
Another difference on a really hot day: moms got into the water.
"I normally don't go in the pool, but today I did," said Jessica Green, Dash and Ronan's mom.