Letter to the Editor:

The 2017 National Night Out brought the community of South Plainfield together once again.  The National Night Out Committee began in 2016 formulated by Police Chief James Parker, which consisted of: Ray Rusnak, Liaison to Public Celebrations; Stephanie Bartfalvi, Planning Board member and Pop Warner Coach; and, Debbie Boyle, Chair of Public Celebrations, along with the collaboration of the South Plainfield Library President Darlene Cullen, Library Director Linda Hansen, Board members Cheryl Smiley, Stephanie Wolak, and the Friends of the Library President Stephanie Bonanno, Mrs. Clemente, Mrs. Aronowitz. 1000 Hamburgers and Hot Dogs were donated by Shop Rite of South Plainfield and Restaurant Depot.  Council President Derryck White, Economic Development and Councilwoman Christine Faustini worked along with the businesses in South Plainfield and also helped to hand out the food, along with Councilman Wolak, Ray Rusnak and the Chaplin Ed Seponosky, while Councilman Gary Vesce distributed water and Mayor Anesh and Councilman Bengivenga greeted the residents.  Chief Parker and CFO Glenn Cullen cooked on the grill continuously for 4 hours in order to provide, at no charge, hamburgers and hot dogs.  McCriskin/Gustafson Home for Funeral donated 200 lbs of ice to keep the 20 cases of donated water by the Office of Emergency Management and Bett-a-way,  ice cold.  Home Depot donated 250 activity kits for the children to assemble, CERT and the Radio Club were in charge of parking and traffic control and Paraco Gas donated a large grill. Kevin Bulla donated the use of his large cooking grill and South Plainfield Shop Rite donated a bicycle.  Ocean State Job Lot donated a complete Kayak package and KLK Trucking (Sue Kystropik) donated 3000 lbs of rocks for the children's rock painting event, which Darlene Cullen initiated.  Kelly Richkus of South Plainfield Alliance Against Substance Abuse graciously donated funds for the Mayor's Wellness Tee Shirts, water bottles, coloring books and Drug Awareness Slide Pamphlets, all which were given to the residents.   Friends of the Library donated 400 juice boxes. Debbie Boyle and Stephanie Bartfalvi guided the businesses into their areas and helped them with set up and take down and informed the residents of the groups and businesses that were in attendance.  Alison Gibson and her helpers painted the arms of the children with sparkle tattoos.  Samantha and Alexis Ratti and Katherine Dolinski manned the Mayor's Wellness table.

Fred Butler Printing printed the flyers which were distributed at Christmas In July listing the business who were donating and participating in National Night Out, and Rich Durso who formulated the Red and Black signs that were placed around town announcing the event.  The residents enjoyed Music by DeeJay Matt Victoria, sponsored by SPASA.  The DPW insured that the new Willow Park would be ready with mulch and the new swing sets and worked through the entire evening.  A Bounce House and Rat Race were ready to entertain the children and the Library sponsored inside entertainment which consisted of Face Painting, the infamous "Mr. Ray" and Eddie Lin balloon art outside.  Sakoutis Brothers Disposal provided an enormous red dumpster.  The Fire Department sported their beautiful new lighted Ladder Fire Truck and the Rescue Squad provided ambulance tours for the residents.  Columbia Bank, Investors Bank, The South Plainfield Business Association, The South Plainfield Education Foundation, Cultural Arts, McDonalds-Dave Singelyn on Dunham Road, The McDonalds on Oak Tree Road, AristaCare at Cedar Oaks, The Middlesex County Health Department, THE US ARMY, St. Peters University Hospital, JFK Health -Nick Sottiriou and Maria Sottiriou's  Health Insurance and Dr. Thomas Campana, Chiropractor, Holy Savior Academy, TARGET and the Car Nutz Club with 15 amazing cars,  all joined in the festivities with prizes and handouts for all, helped to make National Night Out that honors our Police Department, Fire Department and Rescue Squad, a huge success, along with the police officers who insured that the residents were safe during NNO.   Everyone enjoyed National Night Out and look forward to the first Tuesday in August 2018, where the community can come together again to honor our first responders.

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Thank you,

Debbie Boyle and Stephanie Bartfalvi