National Night Out returns

Jul. 25, 2013 @ 04:29 PM

Plans in Monroe for National Night Out have been set.

This year the city will host a softball tournament today between its police and fire departments, a National Night Out kick off bash on Aug. 3 and various other activities on National Night Out itself, which falls on Aug. 6 this year.

National Night Out is celebrated every year on the first Tuesday in August and is designed to heighten crime and drug prevention awareness, generate support for and participation in local anticrime programs, strengthen neighborhood spirit and police community partnerships and send a message to criminals letting them know that neighborhoods are organized and fighting back, according to the National Night Out website.

For National Night Out on Aug. 6, there are a few new communities participating in the event this year, including some who have just recently started community watch programs, Officer Shawn Parler of the Monroe Police Department said.

There is also some new additions to games planned for the Aug. 3 kick off bash that will be held at Belk Tonawanda Park, she said.

One addition to the games at the Aug. 3 kick off bash is musical chairs. Other games scheduled for that day are a relay race, corn hole, tug of war, potato sack race, hula hoop contest, whistling contest, Bruster’s Ice Cream eating contest, a water balloon toss and a wing eating contest. Groups participating in this year’s kick off bash are teams from the Monroe Police Department, Monroe Fire Department, Union County Sheriff’s Office, National Guard, C-Com 911 dispatchers, Waxhaw Police Department and Union County EMS, according to fliers for the upcoming event.

On National Night Out, many Monroe communities are planning activities in their neighborhood for their residents as well as members of law enforcement, local fire departments and others who plan to attend.

“It brings the community together for one thing at least for that night,” Ron Cureton, president of the Sutton Park neighborhood, who is helping organize the Camp Sutton Park area National Night Out event, said.

The Camp Sutton National Night Out activities will include dodge ball, a sack race, home run hitting competition, volleyball games and a step team performance that features residents of the nearby area.

Other Monroe neighborhoods are planning similar activities as well as cookouts and other social events.

“It’s a perfect opportunity for neighbors to get together,” Jeff Arwine, who leads the neighborhood watch in Monroe’s historic district and who is helping organize its National Night Out activities, said.

Currently the community is planning to host a cookout on National Night Out, he said.

The National Night Out Softball Tournament between the Monroe police and fire departments will start at 7:30 p.m. today at Williams Park. The National Night Out Kick Off Bash will run from 8 a.m.- noon at Belk Tonawanda Park on Aug. 3.

In addition to activities in Monroe, other National Night Out festivities are being organized throughout the county as well across the nation for Aug. 6.

Some National Night Out Monroe community activities on Aug. 6:

1 p.m.

Cotton Street Apartment-Covered dish dinner in the Cotton Street Apartments’ office.

4 p.m.

Bragg and West-Fellowship Room on Bragg Street-Covered dish dinner.

6 p.m.

Brooks Farm-Food and fun at the Brooks Farm ballpark.

Charlestown Apartments- Cabana at the pool.

Chase Apartments-Cookout at Chase Apartments’ pool.

Forest Hills Drive- Block Party at the end of Forest Hills Drive.

Historic District-Cook out at St. Paul Episcopal Church.

Lakeshores- Hotdog special at 1102 Bentwood.

Nottingham Apartments- Fun and food at Nottingham Clubhouse at the pool.

Sutton Park-Activities at Camp Sutton Recreation Center at 2399 Brooks Street.

Winchester- Fish Fry at Bazemore Center.

6:30 p.m.

Helen Street- Cookout at 1107 Helen Street.

Maurice/Greene Streets-Activities at National Guard Armory on Charles Street.

Lakeside- Marshmallows fun and bring your own picnic lunch at 1018 Zephyr Court.

Lakeview Estates- Bring a wonderful desert and snack at 1226 Rosa Drive.

Lexington Commons-neighborhood cook out on Lexington Commons Drive.

Old Rolling Hills-Brown bag supper at 1103 Memory Lane.

Quality Hills-Activities at the Old Armory Recreation Center.

Riverchase-Food provided by homeowners association at 2501 River Chase Drive.

Wood Haven- Hot dogs social at 948 Cameron Court.

7 p.m.

Colonial Village-Hot dog social, free Kona Ice and other activities at the community park off of Standish Drive.