NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) —  It’s so hot, we could shatter records set more than seven decades ago.  The blazing sun made it feel like 100 degrees on Wednesday and it’s not over yet.

AccuWeather said that Central Park reached a high temperature of 94 degrees Wednesday.  In Newark, the heat index reached a blistering 102 degrees.

An Air Quality Alert will be in effect for much of the area from 2 p.m. to 11 p.m. on Thursday.   A heat advisory is also in effect from 2 p.m. to 11 p.m. Thursday.

It was certainly a brutal day for anyone who had to be outdoors to sweat it out.

Click here to check out our guide to summer safety

“You couldn’t stand outside. It was just the heat from all the pavement — from the bricks and everything, it was just too hot,” Laly Cruz told CBS 2’s Hazel Sanchez.

To find a cooling center near you, click here.

Newark Mayor Cory Booker declared a heat advisory and the city opened a dozen cooling centers for its residents.

People tried to cool off any way they could, including splashing around in pools and sprinklers along with enjoying some delcious ice cream.

“We’ve tried to stay cool. We had some lemonade outside and we stayed in the shade and this is our second trip out for ice cream today,” Diana Moran of Summit, New Jersey said.

Dozens of schools in the Tri-State Area also let out early Wednesday because of the heat, and planned to do the same Thursday. Some schools also plan to cancel sports activities.  The early dismissals came as a result of many older school buildings not being equipped with air conditioning.

WCBS 880’s Levon Putney With Students Getting Out Early In Hackensack

With potentially dangerous heat, New York City’s Office of Emergency Management also opened cooling centers in the five boroughs Wednesday and they will remain open for Thursday’s onslaught of heat.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg stopped by a cooling center in Brooklyn to play some bingo with seniors and tell them not to take any chances with their health.

“It’s a good time to stop in on a neighbor, particularly somebody that’s living by themselves, and say ‘you know, just want to make sure you’re cool enough,'” Bloomberg told 1010 WINS’ Stan Brooks.

The city’s Health Commissioner, Dr. Thomas Farley, also had some advice for checking up on people facing the heat. He said that people tend to become confused, weak and not sweat when they should be sweating.

WCBS 880’s Peter Haskell In TriBeCa

“If people have symptoms like that…get in touch with medical authorities,” he said.

Con Ed says it’s ready to handle the heat streak and won’t lapse into a disastrous blackout like the one that shook the city in the summer of 2006.

Those who have air conditioning will likely keep it cranked up. However, the agency was urging New Yorkers to do their part by keeping the air conditioner on 78 degrees. Con Ed also asks New Yorkers to conserve energy when possible, including running major appliances early in the morning or late at night.

WCBS 880’s Paul Murnane With People Buying Air Conditioners At Aitoro Appliances In Norwalk

Air Conditioners For Sale At Aitoro Appliances - Norwalk, CT - Jun 8, 2011 (credit: Paul Murnane / WCBS 880)

Air Conditioners For Sale At Aitoro Appliances - Norwalk, CT - Jun 8, 2011 (credit: Paul Murnane / WCBS 880)

To help fight the effects of the heat, officials urge people wear loose, light-colored clothing, drink plenty of water, and limit activities outdoors during peak heat.

How will you beat the heat on Thursday? Sound off in our comments section below…

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