Local business helping community beat the heat

A new business set to open in downtown Morgantown this August is stepping up to try to help those suffering in the extreme heat this week — with coolers filled with free water and popsicles. 

“I saw the heat index warning and saw that we don’t have a cooling station for folks,” said Lindsey Jacobs, owner of Monkey Wrench Books on High Street. “I figured I can’t create a cooling station but I can at least put water and popsicles out so folks can at least attempt to cool down. It’s just a small part that I could play.” 

Jacobs, who does a lot of advocacy work with homelessness and the unhoused population in this area, said the response to the coolers has been nothing short of amazing. 

“It has been insane. Things are gone typically within a half hour of putting them in,” she said. “We’ve had a huge outpouring of support from the community. Folks have been bringing water and ice and drinks — it’s honestly been really incredible.” 

While it isn’t even close to a cooling shelter, Jacobs hopes that the effort is making a difference for people in the 90-to-100-degree heat.  

“I popped down there to do a refill and talked to some folks who were really grateful,” she said. 

Along with the donations of supplies she has received, Jacobs said people have sent money to help keep the coolers stocked. 

“It definitely made me hopeful to see so many people respond so kindly and with such big hearts. That made me really happy.”  

As far as how long Jacobs will continue with the coolers, she said, “We’re gonna keep it going as long as it’s hot outside.” 

Those who would like to help with the coolers at Monkey Wrench Books can either drop off donations at 214 High St.  or message Monkey Wrench Books’ social media pages to work something out with Jacobs directly. 

The inside of the new business is still under construction, but Jacobs said there are contractors on site throughout the day and donations can be placed inside the door. Any ice donations can be placed directly into the coolers. 

If everything goes according to plan, Monkey Wrench Books will officially open for business Aug. 17. 

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