‘To give back:’ Salvation Army helps visitors stay cool, hopes to hand out 82K free cups of cold water by State Fair’s end

WEST ALLIS -- We hit 94 degrees in Milwaukee with dewpoints in the 60s on a steamy Saturday, Aug. 4, but the heat didn't keep people away from the Wisconsin State Fair. Instead, some visitors found creative ways to stay cool.

"Oh it's very hot! I'm going to be drinking a lot of water," said Colin Tucker.

"Just wearing shorts and T-shirts and drinking lots of water," said Mariana Herrera.

The clouds on Saturday afternoon kept things slightly more comfortable at State Fair Park, but still, some said the heat was catching up to them. Some people took advantage of misting stations on the grounds for instant relief!

Meantime, at its free "Hydration Station," the Salvation Army handed out free ice-cold water to guests -- something the nonprofit will do every day of the fair.

Salvation Army Lieutenant Patricia Williams said she was happy to see people lining up for a cold drink.

"We're out here at the fair trying to offer free water to keep the people hydrated, so they won't get hot and sweaty and fall out. We want to offer something free to give back to the community. We've done good. We've been here since noon, and I know we've given over 1,500 cups of water," said Williams.

Their goal is to serve 82,000 cups of water by the end of the 2018 Wisconsin State Fair on Aug. 12. The Salvation Army Hydration Station is located just east of the Expo Center on Grandstand Avenue.

"It's awesome -- it really is, and the line is huge for it. Everyone appreciates it and filing up water bottles for you -- that's great," a fair visitor said.

The State Fair Expo Center also served as a refuge from the heat, while back outside, others enjoyed icy treats -- before they melted!

"We had three doses of sunscreen today -- been here since 10 a.m.," said Brandon Pierce.

"It's cooling down here, so that's helpful. Probably walk around a bit more, try things on a stick and enjoy the fair!" a visitor said.

CLICK HERE for everything you need to know about the fair, including a map of the grounds.