Tuesday, August 6, 2013 marks the 30th anniversary of National Night Out.
The introduction of National Night Out, “America’s Night Out Against Crime”, in 1984 began an effort to promote involvement in crime prevention activities, police-community partnerships, neighborhood camaraderie and send a message to criminals letting them know that neighborhoods are organized and fighting back. NATW’s National Night Out program culminates annually, on the first Tuesday of August (In Texas, the first Tuesday of October).
That first year, 2.5 million Americans took part across 400 communities in 23 states.
National Night Out now involves over 37 million people and 15,000 communities from all fifty states, U.S. Territories, Canadian cities, and military bases worldwide.
The idea was the brain child of NATW’s Executive Director, Matt Peskin.
According to NATW, “The traditional ‘lights on’ campaign and symbolic front porch vigils turned into a celebration across America with various events and activities including, but not limited to, block parties, cookouts, parades, visits from emergency personnel, rallies and marches, exhibits, youth events, safety demonstrations and seminars, in effort to heighten awareness and enhance community relations.”
Peskin said, “It’s a wonderful opportunity for communities nationwide to promote police-community partnerships, crime prevention, and neighborhood camaraderie. While the one night is certainly not an answer to crime, drugs and violence, National Night Out represents the kind of spirit, energy and determination to help make neighborhoods a safer place year round. The night celebrates safety and crime prevention successes and works to expand and strengthen programs for the next 364 days.”
This year communities throughout the Fox Valley area are banding together to make the 30th anniversary of this important community event spectacular.
In South Elgin families can enjoy hay rides, carnival games, face painting, a moon walk, balloon magician, and Tammy Town Safety, a traveling town that teaches kids how to be safe in their communities, homes, and when traveling to and from school.
South Elgin’s event is one of the nation’s largest and is a free community event. The event will be held at Concord Park in South Elgin from 6:00 p.m. until 8:30 p.m.
The Kane County Sheriff’s Office will be hosting its annual National Night Out event from 6 to 8:30 p.m. Aug. 6 at the Sheriff’s Office, 37W755 Route 38 in St. Charles.
The Sheriff’s Office will have members from the SWAT Team, Bomb Unit, Corrections Response Team, K9 Unit, Neighborhood Watch groups, Citizens Police Alumni groups available, as well as face painting and kids games.
In Aurora, Georgetown Relief Efforts Neighborhood Organization (GRENO) is holding its ninth annual National Night Out Celebration from 6 to 8 p.m. at Georgetown Elementary School, 995 Long Grove Drive. The event is one of the largest celebrations in Aurora and features free food, live music, and children’s activities. The group will also be holding the Amazing Allison Fund Raiser to help defray medical costs of Allison Harvey, daughter of GRENO co-chair Kris Harvey, who has been hospitalized since early July. Information is on GRENO’s website at www.greno.org.
It’s the annual party against crime and for the health and safety of all citizens. Join the fun August 6 in your community.