(Posted Aug. 1, 2017)
By Kristy Zurbrick, Madison Editor
On the first Tuesday of August, towns across the United States take part in National Night Out, a campaign that promotes neighborhood camaraderie and police-community partnerships. The goal: to make neighborhoods safer, more caring places to live.
This year, London and West Jefferson are hosting National Night Out events. Both are set for Aug. 1.
The London Police Department is heading up London’s National Night Out, which will take place from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Cowling Park on North Main Street.
Area residents are invited to visit with local first responders, register their bicycles, take part in children’s activities, and enjoy free ice cream. Youngsters will be able to “touch a truck,” as fire engines, medics, police cruisers and other law enforcement and emergency vehicles will be on display.
“National Night Out is a way for us to reach out to the community, face-to-face when there isn’t a crisis. It’s a chance for people to see that we’re real people, too,” said Sgt. Joe Cox.
West Jefferson’s National Night Out will take place from 5 to 8 p.m. at the Community Center, 221 S. Center St. Visitors are asked to enter the property via Frey Avenue/Cemetery Road. Look for signs for parking on the Ox Roast grounds.
Throughout the evening, visitors are welcome to enjoy a bounce house, giant slide, dunk tank, face painting, balloon twisting, and music by Ohio Pro DJ.
The West Jefferson Police Department will give away child identification kits and coloring books. Additionally, Arc, West Jefferson’s police dog, will be on hand. AEP will present “live wire” demonstrations. Quinlan Karate also is planning demonstrations. COSI will have five interactive Science Spot kiosks on site.
MedFlight will arrive at 6 p.m. The Jefferson Township Fire Department will conduct a jaws-of-life demonstration at 7 p.m. They also will have their burning house simulator on display.
The event sponsors are Target Corp. and Duke Realty. Target’s mascot will be available for photo opportunities. Additionally, Target will hold a drawing for two free book bags full of school supplies.
Among the other exhibitors are: Hurt-Battelle Memorial Library, Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park, Madison County PAX, Madison County Make a Difference Day, the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Humane Society of Madison County, Holy Shnikies, Happy Druggist, West Jefferson Hardware, the West Jefferson Advocacy Group, Ohio Party Bull, First Energy, and the U.S. Army Recruiting Office.
This year’s theme is “There’s no place like home.”