SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ – South Plainfield’s 6th Annual National Night Out (NNO), a free, family-friendly informational event honoring the borough’s police, fire, rescue squad and emergency management, will take place on Tuesday, Aug. 6. Sponsored by several borough organizations and business, this year’s NNO will feature activities and entertainment for adults and children as well as food, drinks, prizes and giveaways. 

Set to take place from 6 to 9 p.m. behind the South Plainfield Municipal Building/Library, National Night Out is a collaborative effort organized by the South Plainfield Police Department and the South Plainfield Public Library, with assistance from South Plainfield PBA #100. 

“National Night Out enhances the relationship between the residents of South Plainfield and law enforcement while bringing back a true sense of community,” said Detective Sergeant Gary Cassio, who served as co-event coordinator of this year’s event alongside Library Director Linda Hansen. “It provides a great opportunity to bring police and neighbors together under positive circumstances. We want the residents to interact with our officers and get to know them on a more friendly level.”

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During the three-hour event, members of the borough’s police, fire and rescue squad will be on hand to meet and speak with residents in an informal setting. South Plainfield police officers will offer free children’s safety fingerprinting with all who take part entered into a free raffle for a bike helmet. There will be a raffle with proceeds benefiting the borough’s police, fire and emergency services as well as games, giveaways, a DJ., activities for children of all ages, a classic and antique car show, and free hamburgers, hotdogs, and refreshments. 

Additionally, the South Plainfield Library, with support from the Friends of the South Plainfield Public Library,will sponsor a variety of activities and special events throughout the night, including strolling magic with Joe Fischer, free balloon art from Eddie Lin of ‘AU’some Balloons, and a special performance by children's musican Mr. Ray as well as crafts, sparkle tattoos, face painting, an all-ages obstacle course, and a bounce house. 

“We are delighted to once again be part of this family-friendly community event,” said Hansen. 

Several local businesses and community-based organizations will also be on hand throughout the night with giveaways and information, including AFC Urgent Care, Home Depot, Boy Scouts Pack 224, CERT, The Club at Ricochet, Dr. Jeff Gonzalez DDS, the South Plainfield Green Team, Investor’s Bank, Lincoln Technical School, McDonalds, Sky Zone, Unity Bank and the South Plainfield Cultural Arts Commission and the South Plainfield Historical Society. 

Support, in the form of donated products and/or services, for this year’s event is being provided by AKA Printing, Bett-A-Way Distributors, the Borough of South Plainfield, Doug Chapman, the South Plainfield Cultural Arts Commission, The Home Depot, Paraco Gas, Pinto Bros. Disposal, Lowes, Taylor Rental Center, Target, Dick’s Sporting Goods and Twin City Pharmacy & Surgical. Additionally, several local businesses and organizations are providing monetary support, including the South Plainfield Elks #2298 ($200), Friends of the South Plainfield Library ($500), The Italian American Progressive League ($500), Keystone Plastics ($200), Dr. Frank Licato DDS ($100), McDonalds ($500), Shop Rite ($250), South Plainfield Observer($50), and TAPinto South Plainfield ($250). 

“We are thankful to all who have signed up to support the event in the form of their time, services, and/or donation of items or monetary contributions,” said Hansen, extending special thanks to the Friends and the police department ‘for always supporting library events and fundraisers throughout the year.’

“When Chief Parker asked me to take over this event it was a very easy transition due to the fact working with Linda from the library made it seamless,” said Cassio. “The South Plainfield Police Department is happy to join together with the library for this year’s National Night Out event. We hope the community will come out, enjoy the activities, and get to know us better.”

About National Night Out 

National Night Out, sponsored by the National Association of Town Watches, is held annually on the first Tuesday in August and is intended 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. 

The first National Night Out took place in 1984 and featured a traditional ‘lights on’ campaign along with symbolic front porch vigils. Over time, however, the campaign grew 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. 

The idea of the program has evolved into fostering a partnership between local law enforcement and the community residents.  By working in concert, crime can be reduced and the quality of life that a community enjoys improved. Today, over 37.8 million people and 16,124 communities from all 50 states, U.S. Territories, Canadian cities and military bases worldwide participate in National Night Out events. 

For additional information on the national campaign, visit http://natw.org.

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