The Spring Grove Police Department and its reserve unit hosted their 13th annual National Night Out Against Crime on Aug. 6 at the Fest Building.
"We had a good night with about 400 people enjoying the food and camaraderie," commented Spring Grove Police Chief Paul Folz. "We really appreciate everyone that came out for the event."
National Night Out Against Crime is an event for people of Spring Grove and the area to gather and visit with friends and neighbors - new and old.
"If people know their neighbors personally, they are more inclined to call if something doesn't seem quite right at their neighbor's house; they are more apt to pay attention," explained Folz.
The national event began in 1984 as an effort "to promote involvement in crime prevention activities, police-community partnerships, neighborhood camaraderie and send a message to criminals letting them know that neighborhoods are organized and fighting back," states the website, www.nationalnightout.org.
The first year, 2.5 million Americans took part across 400 communities in 23 states. Now, more than 37 million people and 15,000 communities from all 50 states, U.S. territories, Canadian cities and military bases worldwide take part in the event.
This is the 13th year that Spring Grove has hosted an event. Each year attendees are treated to a dinner of hot dogs, pork burgers, beans, chips, and beverages. Children of all ages enjoy the free ices and freshly spun cotton candy as well as the many inflatables and activities provided by J&J Amusements.
Many door prizes are also given out to attendees each year. "We are very thankful for all of our corporate donations for door prizes this year; it made the evening special," added Folz.
A special recognition was also given to Pat Blagsvedt for her 24 years of service to the city and police department. "She has been a great asset to have, and we thank her very much for all the work that she has done," said Folz.
Helping make the night possible were some of the Syttende Mai royalty, the police reserves, spouses, friends of the police department and the two newest officers - full-time officer Heiden, and fill-in officer Irwin.
"We enjoyed our evening and are already looking ahead and planning next year's event," Folz said. "We also want to remind people to watch out for each other. If a voice in your head says that something you see just isn't quite right, we'd like you to contact us."