Free fun, festivities planned for National Night Out

Tuesday, Aug. 6

5:30-8:30 p.m.

Outdoor swimming pool

National Night Out (NNO) is an annual community-building campaign that promotes police-community partnerships and enhances the relationship between neighbors and law enforcement, all while promoting a true sense of community camaraderie.

This year’s NNO event will take place nationwide Aug. 6 and many law enforcement organizations at the local, state and military installation level will be participating. The NAS Patuxent River Police Department is no exception, and they’re inviting the Pax community to come out – rain or shine – to mingle with their neighbors and law enforcement officers, and just have some good old-fashioned fun.

Supported by Morale, Welfare and Recreation, the police department is taking the lead on NNO, with additional partners such as Mission BBQ, The Commissary and Lincoln Military Housing participating.

The event, held from 5:30-8:30 p.m., will encompass the swimming pool as well as the adjacent Youth Center play area.

“The [department] is working hard to get things in place and we’ll be blocking off roadways to provide adequate parking,” explained Pax River Police Chief John Romer. “There’ll be a lot of free fun and festivities so the kids can have a good time.”

In addition to swimming, attendees will find free food and drinks, two bouncy houses, facepainting, a dunk tank, and music and entertainment. Also on hand will be McGruff the Crime Dog, K-9 demonstrations, police vehicles, a fire truck pump to hose down the kids, and the emergency command vehicle.

“We’re going to let the kids talk on walkie-talkies back to the command vehicle,” Romer added. “Everyone from the police department will be doing one thing or another, including manning all the tents. We want to give back to the community, show them what we can do for them, and promote safer neighborhoods.”

The best way to build a safer community is to know your neighbors and your surroundings. To date, 38 million neighbors in 16,000 communities across the country have participated in the last 36 years of National Night Out. In Maryland alone, 133 cities have planned activities for this year’s NNO.

“It has proven to be an effective, inexpensive and enjoyable program to promote neighborhood spirit and police/community partnerships in the fight for a safer nation,” Romer noted. “And we wanted our community to be part of the nation’s largest annual crime and drug prevention event. All who have base access are welcome and encouraged to attend. It’s going to be a good thing.”