Hundreds turned out Tuesday night in 36 different Pleasanton neighborhoods for the city's annual participation in National Night Out, an event that took place across the country.
The block parties that constitute National Night Out have been taking place for 27 years. The goal of the nationwide event is to raise crime and drug awareness, generate support for anti-crime programs, strengthen neighborhood spirit and to send a message to criminals that communities are fighting back.
Pleasanton began its involvement in the event 10 years ago, with four block parties. Tuesday night, many local streets were closed as neighborhoods sponsored games and contests for the children with everyone joining in barbecues, potluck dinners, appetizers and ice cream socials.
At Harvest Valley Church's parking lot off Hopyard Road, DJ Glenn Wohltmann (who is also a reporter for the Pleasanton Weekly) played dance music and announced contest winners at the Valley Trails neighborhood block party. More than 50 households joined in the celebration with a tri-tip barbecue and a visit by a fire truck and crew from the Livermore-Pleasanton Fire Department. Firefighters showed the more than 30 children at the party how the fire truck works and had the kids don their helmets.
Also hosting 50 homes and more were block parties in Del Prado Park and on Beachwood Way while residents of more than 30 apartments, including 20 children, got together outside the Promenade Apartments on Case Avenue for a barbecue, games and prizes.
Besides visits from firefighters at many of the locations, Pleasanton police led by Chief Michael Fraser also made numerous stops at the neighborhood parties along with City Manager Nelson Fialho and some members of the City Council.
Nationally, it was estimated that more than 37 million people in 15,000 communities participated in this year's National Night Out festivities.