National Night Out

By on 25 July, 2012 in Crime and Safety, Fun, Karren Pell with 0 Comments

Live music at last year's National Night Out. Photo by Karren Pell.

I hate to state the obvious about August being hot, but it’s an important element in my blog post topic. I’m looking ahead to the yearly “National Night Out” on August 7. Obviously, whoever scheduled this event does not live in the Deep South. Regardless of the usual tropical temperatures, neighborhoods in Midtown will be turning out to support the event and, in the process, come out of their air conditioned homes to visit with friends and have some fun.

The official name of this event explains its purpose and therefore somewhat justifies otherwise sane people gathering out in the Alabama August heat: “National Night Out: America’s Night Out Against Crime.” Sponsored by the National Association of Town Watch, the NNO website states the main objectives are to heighten crime prevention and strengthen neighborhood spirit and police-community partnerships. The information also lists another goal: “To send a message to criminals letting them know that neighborhoods are organized and fighting back.”

Well, while we are fanning (I’ve got one of those cool funeral fans), and sweating (no personal comment on that), the thugs are most likely holed up in their air-conditioning watching re-runs on stolen plasma TVs. Nonetheless, National Night Out it is — and we will gather and have some fun. That’ll show ‘em.

My fabulous neighborhood, Capitol Heights, has a full-tilt, the-whole-neighborhood-is-invited party. We have live music — electric guitars and different singers jump up and render at will — and lots of food and beverages. And we don’t get any complaints because the police are invited and party with us! How cool is that? In addition to police folks and musicians (quite a combination), guests included kids of all ages, and dogs of all ages! Sweeney Lou and Dolly and Sam love it! The food is fabulous, and no, we aren’t afraid of the potato salad. We bring lawn chairs and gather at in the front lawn of our neighbors’ beautiful home on Winona Street.

So check out your neighborhood and see what’s shakin’ for National Night Out. If it looks grim, come on out and join us in Capitol Heights. We’ll be having a capital time!

Karren Pell is a writer, teacher, and performer who lives with her husband, Tim Henderson, and an assortment of cats and dogs in Capitol Heights. She is the author of three books. Her musical compositions range from commercial songs to theatrical works, with five musical adaptations to her credit.

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