July 19, 2017

Police and Rec Department Will Host Community Night Out on August 1

Don’t miss the biggest pool party of the summer!

For souvenir giveaways, ice cream, Zumba dancing, and free hot dogs and water bottles provided by McCaffrey’s Food Markets; displays of emergency tools and equipment by the Princeton Police Department (PPD), Fire Department, and First Aid Squad; and a host of other activities; the Community Park Pool at 380 Witherspoon Street is the place to be on Tuesday, August 1 from 5 to 8 p.m. for Princeton Community Night Out.

“It’s great for the community to come together and interact in a variety of casual ways,” said Princeton Council member Jo Butler. “It’s been a great evening for as many years as I can remember. There’s always a tremendous turnout.”

She added, “Politicians, elected officials, fire and police officials all get a little tainted by what’s going on nationally. This gives us all a chance to put a human face on what we do.”

Sponsored by the PPD, PBA Local #130, and the Princeton Recreation Department, and now in its 11th year, Princeton Community Night Out, which started as part of a national Night Out program, has grown steadily. “We learned that our community received a greater benefit from a more expansive, community-oriented program,” said Police Sergeant Fred Williams.

“By involving the Princeton Recreation Department, the Department of Human Services and other community groups, we get more buy-in to the theme of crime prevention and public service,” he continued. “The goal, as with all of our community-related programs, is to get connected with the community. Community connections and relationships can assuage divergent opinions and ensure a productive dialogue between police and the community.”

The PPD will host a K9 demonstration with Sgt. Matt Solovay and his partner Harris, a fully-trained ordnance, tracking, and patrol K9. The police will also be cooking more than a thousand hot dogs as well as providing information on crime prevention, drug abuse, and other public safety issues — not to mention presiding at the dunk tank. “The police show great humor and camaraderie,” Ms. Butler said, “especially when they sit at the dunk tank. Everyone gets a big kick out of that. I admire their dedication.”

The Fire Department will demonstrate fire prevention techniques and provide fire safety awareness information, and Princeton Corner House will offer information on counseling services ranging from addiction to recovery to bullying.

Other community groups involved include Womanspace, the Princeton Public Library, Access Princeton, and Princeton Tennis Club.

“This event and others have helped our department to establish and maintain a solid reputation within our community,” said Mr. Williams.

“We take great pride in the partnership with the PPD,” added Princeton Recreation Department’s Vikki Caines, “and we love the interaction the Recreation Department has with the public. We are looking forward to a wonderful evening.”