HAWTHORNE AND PROSPECT PARK, NJ - Towns across the nation celebrated "National Night Out" Tuesday evening, a community event to build connections between law enforcement and residents.
National Night Out is "an annual community-building campaign that promotes police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie to make our neighborhoods safer, more caring places to live. National Night Out enhances the relationship between neighbors and law enforcement while bringing back a true sense of community," according to a statement.
Hawthorne began National Night Out at 5:30 p.m. on the Bandshell grounds near the municipal swimming pool. A number of booths were set up, as well as food trucks, and representatives of the Police Department, Fire Department, Ladies Auxiliary, Municipal Alliance, Domestic Violent Response Team, CERT, and Ambulance Corps. At 7:30, Radio Nashville began their performance.
Councilman Frank Matthews, attending in the audience, expressed to TAPinto Hawthorne his excitement at seeing the show, since a violent thunderstorm washed out the festival last year.
A large crowd had gathered on lawn chairs to listen to the concert, while others sat on blankets spread out on the grass.
In Prospect Park, the festivities began at 6:00 p.m. and ended with a showing of "The Incredbiles 2" at 8:15. Mayor Khairullah took the first throws at a dunk tank which had Borough Administrator Instashan Chowdhury as its first volunteered victim. The first throw missed but the second struck home, splashing the county's youngest Borough Admin into the water. A line of kids gathered to make their own throws, while others were harnessed to ascend a 26-foot climbing wall, and bounced in inflatable castles. The Prospect Park Police Department and Sheriff's Department were on hand, manning a cotton candy machine and demonstrating a remote-controlled security robot which can drive into a building or other confined place and give officer's an eye on a potentially dangerous situation without putting themselves in harm's way.
A number of civic, religious, and governmental organizations were on hand as well at booths on either side of North 10th Street.
Above is a collection of photos from both towns' celebrations.
Sharon Albin contributed to this report.
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