Lawrence KS, Heat Wave August 2023 - [My Sweaty Review]

The National Weather Service Says the Excessive Heat Warning Ends at 10pm August 24th

the weather map and 10 day outlook for lawrence kansas

This is probably the hottest week I've ever experienced in the 20+ years I've been living in Lawrence. It's like a sauna outside, and it's taking its toll on all of us locals.

I've been trying to stay inside with the air conditioning cranked up, but that's expensive and I'm starting to feel like a vampire in my own home.

This region is known for its humidity, but hot-dang, even short durations of this temperature is suffocating.

the author of this aricle is posing for a head shot

"This is how I imagine Evergy is spending their time during this heat wave."

Bryan Reynolds

Let's Review My Day in the Theme of Dante's Inferno

As the first light of dawn pierced the sky, I awoke to find myself in the heart of a torrid summer, much like Dante who had found himself lost in a dark forest.

The city of Lawrence, Kansas, had transformed into an inferno of its own, consumed by a heat wave of epic proportions.

134 degrees heat index

On Sunday, it reached a staggering 134 degrees Fahrenheit, making this not just a hot summer day but a potentially life-threatening situation.

In this first circle of my journey, I found myself in my humble abode, the air conditioner humming a continuous symphony of relief. Yet, outside the sanctuary of my dwelling, the heat was a relentless beast, prowling and waiting. The heat index had soared to a staggering 134 degrees Fahrenheit, a figure that seemed more at home in the depths of Dante's Inferno than in a Midwestern town.

Venturing into the second circle, I stepped outdoors, only to be met with a wall of heat that seemed almost sentient in its malevolence. Sweat trickled down my brow as I embarked on what felt like a journey through the seven circles of hell. The sun, once a welcome sight, had become a merciless tormentor, its rays searing the earth beneath my feet.

As I traversed the third circle, the city streets were eerily quiet, save for the distant hum of air conditioners. The usual hustle and bustle had been replaced by a stifling stillness. Fellow residents had sought refuge indoors, leaving the city to the mercy of the heat.

In the fourth circle, I found myself in the pick up line at my 6-year-old elementary school. I was relieved by the fact they did not go outside for recess today. The air was thick with a sense of shared struggle, a silent acknowledgment that we were all navigating this heatwave together.

The fifth circle led me to the homes of relatives and neighbors. Much like Dante checking on his loved ones, I found myself doing the same. The elderly, in particular, were vulnerable, their frail bodies bearing the brunt of the extreme temperatures.

As I ventured into the sixth circle, the local news forecast offered no respite. The heatwave was predicted to last the week, the temperatures showing no sign of relenting. A feeling of despair washed over me, akin to Dante's encounter with the souls in the City of Dis.

In the seventh and final circle of my journey, I returned home, utterly drained. The once comforting hum of my air conditioner now seemed a mocking reminder of the heatwave's tyranny. As I collapsed onto my couch, I couldn't help but think of Dante's words, "In the middle of our life’s journey, I found myself in a dark wood."

Yet, just as Dante emerged from his inferno, I too knew this heatwave would pass. We would emerge stronger, our spirit tempered by the fires of this experience. For now, though, we endure, each day a testament to our resilience in the face of this sweltering adversity.

sunflower looking down in the sun

A Heat Wave Lawrence KS, Record-Breaking Experience

August 2023 will forever be seared into the memories of Lawrence, Kansas residents. An extreme heat wave has gripped the city, making everyday life unbearable. The National Weather Service issued an excessive heat warning, and with good reason. The heat index values have been off the charts.

During the week, temperatures remained at record highs. The heat indexes made simple outdoor activities a risk, even for short durations. Even the Kansas City area, known for its hot summers, has been struggling with the extreme heat. And there seems to be no break in sight, as the forecast predicts the heat will continue through Thursday.

The city has responded by opening cooling centers, providing some relief from the heat. But even inside, the humidity makes the air feel heavy and uncomfortable. Air conditioning units are working overtime, and I find myself silently thanking the person who invented such a lifesaver.

Here's a list of suggestions to stay safe during this heat wave:

  • Stay hydrated - Drink plenty of water.
  • Avoid outdoor activities, especially during peak heat hours.
  • Visit local cooling centers if your home isn't adequately cool.
  • Check on relatives, particularly the elderly and those without air conditioning.
  • Limit exposure to the sun and use sunscreen when outside.

Bars on (or near) Mass Street with the

Best Air Conditioning

  1. Red Lyon
  2. Jazzhaus
  3. Jefferson's
  4. Dempsey's

Final Thoughts about This Heat Wave

This excessive heat warning is expected to end around Thursday night. Today is Monday. The mere thought of enduring this heat for pretty much all week. But I find comfort in knowing that we are all facing this situation together. We can help each other out by checking on our loved ones and staying informed about the latest weather updates.

Let us keep up hope, for soon these scorching temperatures will pass and we will be able to rejoice in the relief of cooler days. Until then, let us all remain vigilant and take the necessary precautions to stay safe. In the meantime, let us savor every moment of summer that we can, for there is no greater gift than a warm summer day.

So when this heat wave passes, don't forget to go out and enjoy it.


a family standing outside of memorial stadium in Lawrence kansas on a snow day
Bryan Reynolds


Bryan Reynolds is a proud 20+ year resident of Lawrence, Kansas and an alumnus of the University of Kansas where he earned both a Bachelor of Science in Journalism and a Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies. His insightful and engaging blogs have resonated with readers far and wide, garnering more than 500,000 views to date across all his work.

Although Bryan doesn't identify as a journalist, he's an obsessive observer who loves to share his thoughts and reactions about life in Lawrence on his blog. An avid Mass. Street enjoyer, Bryan brings a local's perspective to his writing. Bryan's passion for his hometown shines through in every post, making his website a must-read for anyone interested in the pulse of Lawrence.


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