SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ - National Night Out is a community-wide, awareness-raising event held annually since 1984 and is sponsored by the National Association of Town Watch in the United States and Canada.  South Plainfield’s first annual National Night Out will take place on Tuesday, August 5th, 2014, from 6 pm to 9 pm at Veterans Park.  The event is meant to increase awareness about police and safety programs in the community, such as crime prevention, drug prevention, as well as fire prevention, health and safety programs in the community.

National Association of Town Watch (NATW) is a non-profit organization dedicated to the development and promotion of various crime prevention programs. The introduction of National Night Out, “America’s Night Out Against Crime”, was in 1984 which began an effort to promote involvement in crime prevention activities, police-community partnerships, neighborhood camaraderie and to send a message to criminals letting them know that neighborhoods are organized and fighting back. NATW’s National Night Out program culminates annually on the first Tuesday of August.

NATW’s Executive Director, Matt Peskin introduced National Night Out in 1984. The first National Night Out took place on Tuesday, August 7th, 1984. That first year, 2.5 million Americans took part across 400 communities in 23 states.  National Night Out now involves over 37.8 million people and 16,124 communities from all fifty states, U.S. Territories, Canadian cities and military bases worldwide.

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The traditional “lights on” campaign and symbolic front porch vigils turned into a celebration across America with various events and activities including, but not limited to, block parties, cookouts, parades, visits from emergency personnel, rallies and marches, exhibits, youth events and safety demonstrations and seminars.

Councilman Robert Richkus presented this initiative to the Borough Council at the beginning of his firm term in January, 2014, as it was gladly accepted by the Borough Council.  Co-chairpersons for this event are Debra Anne Leporino and Karen Hurst who will have the first annual National Night out be dedicated to our community’s safety programs and will also showcase the community’s not-for profit organizations.  “National Night Out represents the kind of spirit, energy and determination that makes South Plainfield the community we are and will be a celebration that will work to expand and strengthen our community programs” states Chairwoman Leporino, “This will be a wonderful opportunity for the community of South Plainfield to get together in an effort enhance community relations”. 

Your can find out more information on National Night Out by visiting http://natw.org .  If your safety program and not-for-profit organization is interested in participating in this year’s event, visit http://southplainfieldnj.com to complete the not-for-profit vendor form.