Some 36-million people, in 15,000 communities will take part in National Night Out (NNO) festivities on August 2nd. NNO founder Matt Peskin is executive director of the National Association of Town Watch, which is based in Wynnewood, PA. Now in its 28th year, Peskin says National Night Out is still growing. “Each year we pick up some more cities and towns, which were either not aware of it, or not able to participate in the past,” says Peskin, who has seen NNO evolve from front porch vigils into massive community celebrations.
The goal behind National Night Out is still to build communities and reduce crime. Peskin says it’s the result of neighbors interacting with neighbors, and neighbors interacting with police officers in a non-threatening environment. “Neighbors get to see that police are just people too and if something’s wrong, they feel a little bit more comfortable picking the phone up the next day and calling them,” Peskin explains.
National Night Out was a nationwide event from its launch in 1984, but you can find a litany of NNO events here in Peskin’s home state of Pennsylvania. From Alburtis (Lehigh County) to Worthington (Armstrong County), NNO festivities are planned for towns big and small on August 2nd.
With the current state of the economy, Peskin says this year is a great time to get involved with your local National Night Out. “It’s good to know that there are people around you that you can count on, and one thing you want is a safe neighborhood.”