How to survive the sweltering heat:
Handheld fans. Natural raffia fans or classic accordion fans (both available at orientaltrading.com) look pretty placed in big baskets.
Ice-cold compresses. Buy a pack of inexpensive washcloths from a dollar store, roll each up and secure with a rubber band, then toss into a cooler of ice water for guests to grab. (The best cooling points are the neck and wrists, where large arteries run close to the skin.)