In North Hudson, the municipalities of North Bergen and West New York pulled out all the stops for the festivities associated with their National Night Out celebrations.
“It’s going to be a great night: block parties throughout the township, ranging from it’s southern most point here at [John F.] Kennedy School … Night Out is all about crime prevention but the real foundation of that crime prevention is getting to know your neighbors,” said North Bergen Police Chief Robert Dowd.
“Getting out, talking to people, it’s also a great opportunity for police officers to stop and engage with the public.”
Dowd also indicated that 95 percent of the department’s off-duty officers, along with a number of local teachers, were willing to dedicate their evening to the event.
In North Bergen, township officials organized seven different National Night Out locations that included hamburgers, hot dogs, popcorn, cotton candy, moon bounces and giveaways that ranged from stickers to a brand new bicycle.
Just 15 minutes or so away, West New York officials opted for one centralized location at Miller stadium, but no one seemed to mind with children able to enjoy slides, food and check out the inside of several different first responder vehicles.
Police Director Robert Antolos said the department looks forward to National Night Out each and every year to foster the relationships between officers and the general public.
“Showing respect: respect to the community, you give respect, you get respect. And when the community knows their police department respects them, you get it back, you build that trust.”