Union neighbors target crime by getting out

Different Union County towns and neighborhoods will host their own National Night Out event Tuesday, Aug. 7. Above, a photo from one of last year’s events.

For 29 years, communities across the United States have come together for National Night Out to increase crime awareness and prevention in their neighborhoods.  And it’s time to do it all again in Union County, as events are planned for Tuesday, Aug. 7, in a number of area communities.

Monroe has participated in National Night Out for 15 years, while local towns like Fairview, Indian Trail, Stallings and Waxhaw are all registered with the National Night Out organization website.

So why should you spend the night out Tuesday?

“This is just a great event for communities to get to know their police officers; it’s going to be big,” Officer Shawn Parler, with the Monroe Police Department, said.

Neighborhoods and businesses around the county have organized their own events, while some towns like Wesley Chapel and Marvin are promoting their own town-led event. In Monroe, the police department will go to multiple events to speak and help the communities devise a safety plan or neighborhood watch.

“We also have a city-wide contest,” Parler said. “The judges will come in and they will judge on participation, enthusiasm and over-all planning.  In a couple of weeks we will announce the winners for the city-wide contest.”

Wesley Chapel will hold a National Night Out event in the Target parking lot, 6350 Weddington Road.  The event will be held from 7 to 9 p.m.

“What we have planned this year is a little different because we have more people coming,” Tessie Morris, an event organizer, said.  “We started out with like 50 people our first year, and then last year we had over 200 people.  This year we are planning for a lot more.”

This will be the fifth year Wesley Chapel has held events for National Night Out.  There will be live music and various safety demonstrations throughout the night, as well as activities for kids.

All materials used at the event have been donated by area organizations, and Target, Pepsi and Coca-Cola are all sponsors for the night.

In Marvin, Deputy Swan of the Union County Sheriff’s Office will be patrolling neighborhoods and joining any block parties, cookout or programs going on. Town council members also will be out supporting events and visiting neighborhoods.

There’s still time for interested neighborhoods around Marvin to get involved by calling 704-843-1680 and asking that Swan pay your event a visit.

Also nearby is the big Night Out event at the Cady Lake neighborhood in south Charlotte, right across the border from Weddington off Providence Road and Tom Short Road. The neighborhood is partnering with Target, a National Night Out sponsor, and asking area communities to join in from 7 to 10 p.m. The event will include officials and vehicles from the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department, Charlotte Fire Department, North Carolina Highway Patrol and other groups.

The neighborhood clubhouse is located at 5301 King Arthur Drive.

If your neighborhood isn’t hosting a Night Out event, here’s a few in Monroe you and your family can check out on Tuesday:

• Monroe Aquatic and Fitness Center, 2325 Hanover Drive – Cookout and swimming competition for members only; 6 p.m.
• Bragg Street Nutrition Center, 624 N. Bragg St. – Potluck, people are asked to bring an item to contribute; 4 p.m.
• Brooks Farm ballpark, near entrance of neighborhood – Block party; 6 p.m.
• Charlestown, cabana at neighborhood pool – Block party; 6 p.m.
• Colonial Village, community park on Standish Drive – Block party; 6 p.m.
• Cotton Street Apartments, Community Center – Potluck, all participants are asked to bring an item to contribute; 1 p.m.
• Glendalough, neighborhood pool – cookout and pool party; 6:30 p.m.
• Icemorlee Street Apartments, Icemorlee Street near ball field – Block party; 6 p.m.
• Lakeview Estates, 1226 Rosa Drive – Dessert party; 6:30 p.m.
• Lexington Commons, Lexington Avenue – Potluck, all participants are asked to bring an item to contribute; 7 p.m.
• Nottingham Apartments, complex pool – Pool party; 6 p.m.
• Oak Forest Apartments, 921 Oak Forest Drive – Potluck, all participants are asked to bring an item to contribute; 6 p.m.
• Quality Hills, National Guard Armory, 500 S. Johnson St. – Cookout, games and music; 6 p.m.
• River Chase, 2500 block of River Chase Drive – Cookout and kids’ games; 6:30 p.m.
• Southwinds – Cookout and best hamburger contest; 6:30 p.m.
• Sutton Park Recreation Center, 2303 Brooks Street – Cookout, music, games and more; 5:30 p.m.
• Winchester, Bazemore Center, 1001 Winchester Ave – Fish fry; 6 p.m.
• Woodbrook Apartments, 2525 Woodbrook Lane – Block party; 6:30 p.m.

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