DIY ways to cool off

Abernathy Miller, Columbus Alive

Sometimes it's best to just pull up your sleeves and take care of business; summer is very serious business. Rather than doling out cash to go to the public pool, or hoping to hook up with somebody with central air conditioning - try these fun DIY ways to chill out.

Kiddie Pool

For about $13 and a case of beer, you too can build a beautiful oasis to combat the summer heat right in your backyard. Grab an inflatable pool from any big-box store, stock up on booze and bust out the garden hose for a mini vacation at home. Inflate the pool, crack a beer and sit your ass down while your neighbors turn green with envy.

DIY AC unit

It's no fun to dive into a Netflix K-hole in sweltering temperatures. If you don't have the luxury of central air, or don't care to fuss with a window unit, make your own. A Styrofoam cooler, a fan and a few ice packs are all you need to bring the temperature back down to bearable. Fill the cooler with ice packs, cut a hole in for the fan, and turn on the fan. Voila! Now you can binge-watch without leaving sweat stains on your sheets.

Slip 'N' Slide

All you need to relive your childhood is a heavy duty plastic drop cloth and a water hose. Pin down the plastic (croquet stakes work well), wet it and enjoy summer like a 10-year-old. Roundup some friends and turn your backyard into a human bowling alley. Pro-tip: Add some dish soap to the plastic for added fun.

Water Balloon Fight

Rather than complain to all your friends about the heat, do something about it. Fill up as many water balloons (and squirt guns, if you're so inclined) and start a wet and wild game of capture the flag, or balloon volleyball! Make sure to use actual water balloons (they are smaller and thinner than regular balloons) and to fill them adequately so they actually pop when contact is made. Whoever loses buys beer.


If everything else feels like too much work (when it's hot it all feels like too much work), go lo-fi and chill out under a sprinkler. The only instructions are to buy a kiddie sprinkler, set up a lawn chair and relax. Other than attaching the hose and opening up the lawn chair, the system is basically idiot-proof.