Are you ready for a night out? National Night Out is an annual event that gets big Twin Cities participation every year. Tonight is the night, and many blocks and neighborhoods have planned more or less elaborate events, including closing streets, setting up special events for kids, planning parties, and inviting police to come and talk about crime prevention. (For a great NNO story from a few years ago, see Friends in Peace.
The original plan for National Night Out called for people to turn on their porch lights and sit on their front porches, as a sign that neighbors, not criminals, owned the neighborhood. If you haven’t planned anything, that’s still a possibility. Or you could check the idea-packed Minneapolis National Night Out Web site for suggestions or to check on whether there’s a party somewhere nearby. Last year there were 1,117 registered observances in Minneapolis.
St. Paul’s Web site is less elaborate, and offers some ideas for observance even if you are starting late—”having root beer floats or lemonade, sharing a pot luck dinner, planning games or activities, and maybe even sidewalk chalk to draw pictures about what safety looks like on your block.”