Cooling stations save Mesa Freedom celebration

MESA, AZ - Record heat caused some concern for organizers of one of Mesa's biggest celebrations of the year.

On Saturday, the fourth annual Southwest Ambulance Arizona Celebration of Freedom kicked off in record high temperatures.

Something Mother Nature has pulled on organizers every year.

"Two years ago it was 118. Last year it was 116. The first year we did it I think it was 115," said organizer Steve Wright.

Event coordinators expect more than 30,000 people to attend the event held from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. in downtown Mesa.

In order to ensure everyone stays cool, they set up the entire event with cooling stations that included water and fans with cold mist.

Thomas Tutera brought a giant cooling system he calls Typhoon Tommy to the event to help people cool down.

"What you're experiencing right now is 34 tons of cold air," he explained. "It shoots out ice cold mist 40 feet."

Wright added, "We want to make sure everyone stays safe, that's why we bring out these huge misters and provide plenty of shade for people. I think by 6 o'clock it will be about 100 degrees, so quite a bit cooler. It will be a bit of a relief if you can call it that."

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