Watch your neighborhood for crime-reducing activities in August
West Valley City will be participating in National Night Out Against Crime activities in a big way this year. Throughout the month of August, residents are invited to get involved in events to raise awareness about how to reduce crime and have fun with family, friends and neighbors.
Night Out Against Crime activities start with an official kick-off celebration event scheduled for Monday, Aug. 6. Everyone is invited to attend for a free evening of fun from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Utah Cultural Celebration Center at 1355 West 3100 South.
“Every year, it’s a pretty cool night of fun, food and safety information,” West Valley City spokesperson and event organizer Aaron Crim said.
This year, the Night Out Against Crime kick-off will include entertainment, fun activities and a barbecue. In addition, city leaders, police officers and fire fighters will be attending to meet with residents, provide information and answer questions.
Throughout the event, booths will be set up to provide information about public safety and community building practices.
There will be bounce houses for children, face painting activities and balloon art. All evening long, entertainment will also be available with a different act or performance scheduled to begin about every half an hour.
The line-up of entertainment will begin at 5:30 p.m. with a performance by Paul Boruff; at 5:55 p.m. the police K-9 demonstration will start; the Senior Idols contest winners will sing from 6:20 p.m. to 6:40 p.m.; a Capoeira performance of Brazilian martial arts and dance will be held from 7:10 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.; and the New Time Fiddlers will play from 7:35 p.m. to 7:55 p.m. to wrap up the evening.
Special guest appearances will also be made by McGruff the Crime Dog and the National Night Out Mascot “Nat.”
After the celebration ends, a month of activities to keep the National Night Out theme going will begin. Dozens of neighborhoods will participate by scheduling block parties throughout August. Volunteers and Neighborhood Watch community leaders are organizing the block parties with support from city officials.
Crim said the block parties often include potluck dinners, games and the opportunity to meet new friends in the community.
“It’s a great way to get to know your neighbors,” he said.
The city will provide a handbook with tips and ideas to organize the block parties in local neighborhoods. Anyone interested in hosting a block party is encouraged to visit the city website at http://www.wvc-ut.gov/nno to register a party and download a copy of the handbook.
All of the National Night Out events are being held in conjunction with similar activities across the country.
The National Association of Town Watch, a nonprofit organization, encourages communities to hold the events to come together to support each other and law enforcement officials to reduce crime.