A National Night Out celebration at A.K. Bissell Park this month will feature free food, family-friendly activities for children and adults, and crime prevention presentations and information.
The National Night Out is from 3-7 p.m. Saturday, October 11, at A.K. Bissell Park near the Oak Ridge Civic Center. The community is invited.
The Oak Ridge Police Community Resource Office and the Oak Ridge Neighborhood Watch Program will host the 2014 National Night Out celebration, a crime prevention program promoted by National Association of Town Watch. This year marks the 31st anniversary of this community-police partnership, a press release said.
Magician Danny Whitson will perform feats of magic during the celebration. Festivities will also include Oak Ridge Police K-9 demonstrations, the Mobile Meth Lab exhibit, safety and health exhibits, Oak Ridge Electric Department bucket rides, drug abuse prevention information, Doug LaVerne on steel drums, music, and games. Child fingerprinting and bike registration will be offered. In case of rain, the celebration will move into the Civic Center.
National Night Out is designed to heighten awareness of crime prevention and drug prevention, to generate support for local anti-crime programs, and to strengthen neighborhood spirit and police-community partnerships, the press release said.
“The event also sends a message to criminals, letting them know that neighborhoods are organized and fighting back,” the release said.
Besides the Police Department and Neighborhood Watch, those supporting the festivities will be Volunteers in Police Services, alumni of the Citizens Police Academy, and graduates of the Junior Police Academy. Neighborhood Watch Block Captain Emilee Smith and Oak Ridge Police Community Resource Officer Brandan Sharp are coordinating the event.
Sponsors and contributors include Noble Metals, Papa Murphy’s Pizza, Coca Cola, Comfort Inn, Double Tree Hotel, McArthur Animal Hospital, J&M Butcher Shop, Chuck’s Car Care, Farm Bureau Insurance, Jimmy John’s Gourmet Sandwiches, Baskin Robbins, Food City, Hot Bagel Company, Kroger, United Grocery Outlet, Rocky Top Market, Starbucks, Ridge Package Store, Karen Eidson, Emilee and Rick Smith, Keepin’ It Clean Car Detailing, O’Reilly Auto Parts, Advance Auto Parts, Knoxville Ice Bears, Wonderworks, Walmart, and several Oak Ridge neighborhoods.
Through the Neighborhood Watch Program, groups of neighbors organize and partner with the Police Department to report suspicious activity and keep watch on neighbors’ homes, helping police to reduce crime, and keep neighborhoods safe, the release said. The program helps neighbors improve the quality of life in their communities.