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National Night Out set for next week

Annual event aims to prevent crime, foster police-community relationships

Pleasanton residents and police personnel, like communities throughout the Tri-Valley and the United States, will come together to celebrate National Night Out with neighborhood block parties next Tuesday (Aug. 6).

The 36th annual National Night Out is a crime- and drug-prevention event sponsored nationally by the National Association of Town Watch and co-sponsored locally by the Pleasanton Police Department.

"National Night Out is designed to heighten crime- and drug-awareness; generate support for, and participation in, local anti-crime programs; strengthen neighborhood spirit and police-community partnerships; and send a message to criminals letting them know that neighborhoods are organized and fighting back," said Shannon Whitaker, PPD community relations coordinator.

PPD started participating in National Night Out 20 years ago with four neighborhood block parties. Since then, the event has grown to over 40 block parties, coming from mostly registered Neighborhood Watch groups.

The parties in Pleasanton usually vary from potlucks to barbecues to ice cream socials, and in the past have included live bands, bounce houses and kids parades. Local officials -- PPD, Livermore-Pleasanton Fire Department, elected city and state officials, and representatives from other allied agencies -- try to visit as many of the block parties as possible that night.

To learn more about Tuesday's event, contact Whitaker at 931-5242 or srevel-whitaker@cityofpleasantonca.gov.

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