DUBLIN, Calif. (KGO) -- In honor of the first ever National Cinema Day, movie theaters like Century Theater in Pleasant Hill, were selling tickets for just $3 on Saturday. That brought out the crowds, but some were also trying escape the heat.
"Going to the theaters is one way to get AC," said Cory Schoepf, who lives in Lafayette.
"Just trying to get out before it gets too hot, so we can be in with the AC," said Daeja Tillis, a Vallejo resident.
In Pleasanton, Meadowlark Dairy's soft serve ice cream was a huge hit with the hot weather. Shak Shaikh and his family made the trip from Fremont.
"(My) kids get to run around a little bit. (We are sitting) under the shade. So it's a nice way to cool off," Shaikh said.
Sabiha Rashid and her husband celebrated their one-year wedding anniversary at Mirchi Café in Dublin, which was packed as the dinner rush began.
"We want to be with family and friends, and we have a nice breeze," Rashid said. Their group sat at the restaurant's shaded outdoor patio.
Holiday weekends like Labor Day weekend are critical for the restaurant industry says Mirchi Café owner and chef, Lisa Ahmad. But the heat wave and the threat of blackouts has her concerned.
"If you lose that, it's a huge, huge chunk out of that bottom line," Ahmad said.
Mirchi Café's menu is described as American comfort classics with a Pakistani twist. Ahmad just celebrated 18 years in business this week.
Many restaurants are facing a labor shortage. Inflation is pushing up costs and eating away at profits -- all this at a time when restaurants are trying to rebound from the pandemic.
If a blackout happens, Ahmad says the food that will be spoiled could total thousands of dollars in losses in just a matter of days.
"That's an investment for the restaurateur, because you take in raw product, you process it, add your ingredients and you sell it. And if you lose that, you are literally losing like 30% your total cost of business for that month," Ahmad said.
So far, the restaurant has been packed. Customers are staying cool. Like so many, Ahmad just hopes the power stays on.
RELATED STORIES & VIDEOS:
- What's a Flex Alert?
- Live: Track Bay Area weather conditions
- Heat stroke vs heat exhaustion: What's the difference and what are the symptoms?
- What everybody should know to help prevent hot car deaths
- Dry and secondary drowning: Hidden threats for swimmers
- Can you start a fire if you leave bottled water in your car?
- Can you bake cookies in a hot car?
- Facts and myths about sunscreen
- ABC7 Meteorologist Drew Tuma shares scary heat exhaustion experience
- Lotion in the refrigerator and more hacks to keep cool without AC
- How hot summer weather affects your car
- Natural remedies for sunburn
- Heat hypothesis: The link between summer weather and aggressive behavior
- Tips to stay safe during the hot summer months
- Why it's harder to cool off in humidity
If you're on the ABC7 News app, click here to watch live