If it were up to Lt. Tony Stone, there would be a National Night Out block party in walking distance of every home in Kilgore.
The Kilgore Police Department support operations lieutenant is doing everything he can to reach that goal.
While the rest of the country celebrates the annual event the second Tuesday in August, Kilgore and other heat-stricken communities in Texas aim for more temperate weather later in the fall. This year’s nighttime activities are set for 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 3, and KPD is signing up more parties in advance of the outreach.
According to Stone, neighborhoods across the city have the chance to join forces with thousands of communities nationwide for the annual crime and drug prevention event, now in its 34th year.
The night of Oct. 3, “residents in neighborhoods throughout Kilgore and across Texas are asked to lock their doors, turn on outside lights and spend the evening outside with neighbors and police,” Stone noted, recruiting local homeowners to host (or co-host) a gathering. “Can the Kilgore Police Department count on you to host a block party in your area?”
NNO is sponsored by the National Association of Town Watch, co-sponsored locally through KPD.
The event’s designed to, first, heighten awareness of crime- and drug-prevention efforts, Stone added.
Second, “Generate support for, and participation in, local anticrime efforts,” he noted, as well as to “Strengthen neighborhood spirit and police community partnerships.
Finally, NNO events “send a message to criminals letting them know neighborhoods are organized and fighting back.”
Anyone can reach out to Kilgore Police Department to register a National Night Out party, Stone emphasized, and he’s eager to hear from volunteers. Would-be hosts can reach the KPD support operations lieutenant at 903-218-6910 or via email to Tony.Stone@CityofKilgore.com.
Follow Kilgore News Herald for upcoming announcements of NNO parties and hosts as well as an online map to events.