Organizers of local National Night Out neighborhood gatherings are moving full speed ahead, planning their usual barbecues, potlucks and ice cream socials.
The difference this year is that there won’t be the arrival – with lights flashing and sirens blaring – of a large contingent of city and emergency services personnel. The ‘coordinated caravan’ will not make the rounds this year, but there will be a response on a smaller scale, along with some traditional Night Out treats for youngsters.
Escalon Police will have on duty officers plan to make stops during the National Night Out on Tuesday, Aug. 6 and they will have some glo-sticks and mini finger flashlights to give out to children at the various neighborhood events. The National Night Out T-shirts will also be provided for those community residents serving as organizers in their neighborhoods.
The police department is taking information on all the gatherings and will be able to provide that to its officers, as well as fire and ambulance personnel that might also choose to visit some of the stops. There could also be an informal response by city officials, including council members.
As of press time on Tuesday morning, the gatherings scheduled were: Chardonnay Court, Colombard Court, Saron Lutheran Church on North Street and the 2300 block of Mission. Typically, the gatherings feature a barbecue with residents also bringing a dish to share, with one of the major goals of the evening to get out and meet your neighbors and get familiar with those in the neighborhood. National Night Out began as a way to ‘take back the night’ from crime and drugs, presenting a united front of neighbors against criminals.
Escalon Police Services Manager Dorothy Vandagriff said neighborhoods planning to take part should contact her by Friday, Aug. 2 with their information so that it can be passed along to officers. Vandagriff can be reached at 691-7301.