The Washington area tied the heat record for June 21 set in 1988 as temperatures soared to 98 degrees.
The second day of a heat advisory and unhealthy air brought power outages across the region, made fire and emergency medical services staff cautious, and left tourists running for the museums.
The World War II Memorial still had large groups of locals and tourists flocking to it for one apparent reason: the fountain. Among those dipping their feet into the cool waters of the memorial fountain was a group from the Children's Center in Frederick County.
"The kids enjoyed it. It was a nice way for them to cool off," said Children's Center staff member Rebekah Maxey.
The need for water-related activities spurred concern from the D.C. Fire and Emergency Medical Services Department. Officials reminded residents Thursday morning to not tamper with fire hydrants, no matter how tempting the prospect might be. Taking a break in the pressurized water can result in a $100 fine.
Other D.C. visitors opted to stay indoors and spend the day touring museums instead of monuments. Marc Bradford, of Albany, Ore., came as a parent chaperone on his daughter's eighth-grade summer trip, on which he and the children spent the day at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum.
"It's definitely unbelievably hot, especially for our kids from Oregon, who are used to the rain," Bradford said. "We don't really sweat in Oregon. We just kind of rust a little bit."
Some residents still had to go about their daily outdoor work despite the heat.
Kendra Connelly, of Augusta, W.Va., worked the Bigg Riggs Farm booth at the Freshfarm farmers market near McPherson Square from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
"I'm just trying to stay as hydrated as possible," Connelly said. "For the lettuce, we went and got bags of ice to keep the greens from wilting."
Residents at home had a rough day of power outages reported by Pepco, the longest lasting 21 minutes and affecting 1,200 people in D.C. Dominion Virginia Power reported no outages.
"We are expecting continued outages during this heat wave," said Pepco spokeswoman Myra Oppel. "For these smaller outages, it's really important for customers to call and report them to us."
The region is expected to have scattered showers Friday, mildly decreasing the temperature into the low 90s.