The Town of Huntington will join communities across the nation Tuesday, August 2, in marking the 34th annual National Night Out, the event that promotes police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie to help make neighborhoods safer, better places to live.
Scheduled for Manor Field Park from 5 to 8 p.m., the event is a partnership among the Town, the Suffolk County Police Department, the Huntington Station Business Improvement District and corporate sponsors Target and 7-Eleven. It is designed to heighten crime and drug prevention awareness and to generate support for and participation in local anti-crime efforts.
Planned for this year’s event are a range of new activities, designed to build on the 600 people who attended last year. While the day is for both adults and children, many activities are geared for children, including a basketball tournament, football and soccer competitions and bounce houses. The SCPD will be running a crime scene investigation clinic and presenting a demonstration of police dogs in action. The SCPD is also bringing a Humvee and is arranging an aviation flyover. The Suffolk County sheriff will be bringing its distracted driving simulator and demonstrating its GPS tracker for children and the elderly.
Many not-for-profit groups will be handing out brochures. Among the corporations, New York Life will be providing ident-a-kits, 7-Eleven will be providing snacks and drinks and Target is providing a range of giveaways. A Huntington-based not-for-profit, Bikes for Kids in America, is donating 20 bicycles to be raffled off. There will be free food and a disk jockey to provide music.
“This year especially, at a time when the relationship between police and the community is strained in some places elsewhere in the country, it is gratifying to know that here in Huntington, everybody is working together toward the common goals of reduced crime, increased security and a better quality of life,” Huntington Supervisor Frank P. Petrone said. “Our Huntington Night Out helps cement the bond among the police, government and our residents, and I invite all Town residents to attend.”
“This is a great night out for the community to engage with members of their police department, for folks to learn about crime prevention and policing in their communities, and for police officers to further their relationships with those whom they are proudly tasked to protect and serve,” stated Suffolk County Police Commissioner Timothy D. Sini. “With all great events, this is a superb collaboration among SCPD, the Town of Huntington, Target, the Huntington Station BID and the Huntington Station Enrichment Center. Our partnership with the residents of the Second Precinct is very special and mission critical so we hope to see everyone there.”
“Huntington first started celebrating National Night Out in 2002, and now, 14 years later, recurring issues in the community make it as meaningful now as it was then,” said Dolores Thompson, vice president of the Huntington Station BID, head of the Huntington Enrichment Center and one of the founders of Huntington Night Out. “The good news is that we have forged relationships among law enforcement, government and the community that keep lines of communication open so that when problems arise, we can work together on solutions. So this year’s National Night Out is both a celebration of all that we have done and a reminder of the need to continue the dialogue that will produce progress. Come join us on August 2 for fun, food and information and to help make the statement that together, we can successfully attack drugs, violent crime and issues important to all of us.”
Now in its 34th year, National Night Out is an annual community-building campaign that promotes police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie to make our neighborhoods safer, better places to live. Last year, 38.5 million people from 15,728 communities in all 50 states, U.S. territories and military bases worldwide participated in the event. It is sponsored by the National Association of Town Watch Inc., a nonprofit membership organization dedicated to the development and promotion of organized community crime prevention activities and to the groups and individuals participating in local crime watch efforts.