National Night Out
What is National Night Out?
National Night Out is an annual campaign founded by the National Association of Town Watch (NATW) in the early 1980’s to celebrate the successes resulting from community partnerships between law enforcement agencies, neighborhood organizations, neighborhood watch groups, elected officials and others in helping to make their communities safer and more caring places to live, work, play and invest in.
National Night Out is always celebrated on the first Tuesday in August.
National Night Out Overview
To celebrate National Night Out, city neighborhood organizations and watch groups host a variety of events designed to:
- Generate support for, and participation in, local anti-crime programs,
- Heighten crime and drug prevention awareness,
- Send a message to criminals letting them know that neighborhoods are organized and fighting back and,
- Strengthen neighborhood spirit.
Along with traditional displays of outdoor lights and front porch vigils, city neighborhoods have participated in a variety of events over the years that have included block parties, cook outs, visits from local police, fire department and city officials, flashlight walks, contests, and youth programs.
Participating in National Night Out is an effective, inexpensive and enjoyable program that promotes neighborhood spirit and police-community partnerships in our efforts in maintaining a safe community.
If your neighborhood or apartment community does not currently have a recognized Neighborhood Watch or community group and you would be interested in starting one, contact Neighborhood Services Coordinator [email protected], and he can help you take a bite out of crime!
Planning Your Event
- Talk to your neighbors and invite them to help
- As with planning any event, the more the better
- Use the Neighborhood Month Event Kit to start planning your event.
- Decide what kind of event you want to have
- Block party
- Cookout or potluck
- Watermelon or ice cream social
- Pick a time and a place
- Someone's yard
- Nearby park or public street (Remember, if you plan to use a neighborhood park or wish to close off a public street for your NNO event, please read the Assembly Permit Instructions then complete and submit an Assembly Permit Application (PDF)
- Spread the word
- Let your neighbors know what is planned and invite them to participate
- If you need help with creating a flyer/invite, contact Neighborhood Services for assistance.
- Depending on what your event is, encourage neighbors to bring something.
- Lawn chairs
- Potluck items
- BBQ grills
- Trash and recycling bags
- Their own plates, cups, bowls and utensils (to avoid disposables and creating a lot of trash).
- Other ideas
- if you have a neighborhood fire station, invite them directly
- Send an invitation to the police department
- Get local neighborhood businesses involved
- Create a contact map for your neighborhood so that everyone has an emergency contact number for each household.
If your neighborhood organization or neighborhood watch group would like assistance in planning your National Night Out event, please contact the Neighborhood Services Coordinator in the Office of Community Engagement.
Register an Event
All neighborhood organizations and neighborhood watch groups are encouraged to participate in this annual national event. Please fill out this registration form online.