The Port Arthur News
Helicopters, SWAT and police will soon mingle with local residents in a festival-like atmosphere featuring food, face-painting and musical entertainment this week as communities celebrate National Night Out.
The event is a national initiative designed to build strong community partnerships and promote safe neighborhoods.
This year both Nederland and Port Neches will host events on Tuesday, Oct. 1 while Port Arthur will host a Neighborhood Night Out on Thursday, Oct. 3.
This year marks Nederland’s first time to participate on the nationally recognized date in October. In previous years the city held an event during Fire Awareness Week later in the month of October.
Nederland Police Chief said highlights of Tuesday’s upcoming event set for 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Doornbos Park, 2301 Avenue H, include the landing of Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office helicopter, SWAT equipment on display and a bike safety program as well as different civic clubs selling food and drinks.
There will also be police vehicles, safety demonstrations, child ID kits, crime prevention and awareness information and LifeShare blood drive. Nederland High School cheerleaders and Big Ned will be o hand as well as Gator Country who will be bringing lizards, snakes and reptiles. Face painting and games are also on the schedule.
Port Neches Police will hot its sixth annual National Night Out event at 5:30 p.m. at Port Neches Riverfront Park on Grigsby.
Theresa Beavens, police secretary at PNPD, has been organizing the event for a number of years and tries to make sure each year’s festivities are better than the last.
This year helicopters from, both Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office and Texas Air Rescue will fly in and make landing and allow patrons to get up close and learn the importance of each helicopter.
The U.S. Coast Guard, Acadian Ambulance, SWAT, Port Neches Police and Fire departments will be on hand as well as the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission. Texas Parks and Wildlife will bring along an alligator as well as its new Hall of Shame, an anti-poaching display.
Links and drinks will be free and patrons can enjoy the movie The Croods on a giant screen at 7:30 p.m.
Tonalta School of Music will present the musical entertainment this year.
Beavens said about 1,300 people attended the free event last year.
Port Arthur Police will host Neighborhood Night Out from 5:30 to 9 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 3 in the Target parking lot.
There will be food, door prizes and an opportunity to see the PAPD Mobile Command Unit and visit with PAPD officers.
Volunteers from the Port Arthur Neighborhood Action Committee will be on hand to share information regarding neighborhood watch programs in the city.