National Night Out
By Rosie Garcia and Stephany Valadez, Crime Prevention Officers
National Night Out is an annual community-building campaign that promotes police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie to make our neighborhoods a safer, better place to live. National Night Out is celebrated annually the first Tuesday of August; this year National Night Out is Tuesday, Aug. 4.
National Night Out enhances the relationship between neighbors and law enforcement while bringing back a true sense of community. This event provides a great opportunity to bring police and neighbors together under positive circumstances.
National Night Out was founded by the National Association of Town Watch in 1983. NATW is the nation’s premier non-profit crime prevention organization dedicated to the development and promotion of crime prevention in communities across the nation. NATW recognizes cities for their efforts to promote National Night Out. Modesto was recognized in 2014 as first in California among cities with like populations, and fifth nationally.
Throughout the nation, along with the traditional “lights on” and front porch vigils, there are thousands of block parties, cookouts, parades, ice cream socials, neighborhood flashlight walks, safety fairs, poster and essay contests, and neighborhood meetings. There are also visits by law enforcement agencies, city officials, fire department and city departments such as parks and recreation, and other events and activities that celebrate the spirit of National Night Out.
Modesto is very fortunate to have a strong community partnership with neighborhood watch groups, church groups and businesses to promote and celebrate National Night Out. It is rewarding to our officers and the community to be able to get together and visit with each other at block parties, meeting one-on-one to build relationships.
In 2014, Modesto residents hosted 116 parties, with 275 neighborhoods joining together. Modesto is a “City of Great Neighbors” whose residents are very familiar with National Night Out, and the enthusiasm seems to be growing more and more every year. We are also seeing more residents have parties at their neighborhood parks. This is great because it then encompasses the neighbors from several streets around the park, thus making a positive impact on the neighborhood, growing stronger ties and interest in neighborhood watch. We all know that when neighbors know each other they are more apt to keep an eye out for one another. Together we can make a difference!
Call the Modesto Police Department Crime Prevention Unit
Rosie Garcia, 209.572.9636 or firstname.lastname@example.org, and
Stephany Valadez, 209.572.9639 or email@example.com
by July 17 to register your National Night Out party.