In 1984, Matt Peskin and the National Association of Town Watch, organized an event to bring more awareness to police programs and foster community building and crime prevention throughout American cities. This event, National Night Out, was meant to encourage the public to take back their streets through a sense of community-mindedness. The movement caught traction, and 28 years later, on the first Tuesday in August, National Night Out is still celebrated across the country in neighborhood parks, porches, front lawns, cul-de-sacs, and dowtown centers.
As Portlanders celebrate National Night Out city-wide Tuesday, August 7th, Foster-Powell residents, and anyone else in neighboring communities, will be able to show their neighborhood pride at Kern Park (SE Center and SE 66th), from 6:30 to 8:30 pm. The Foster Powell Neighborhood Association will be hosting the yearly event, with local vendors selling food and the band, “The Kinky Brothers,” providing entertaiment with live music.
While numerous events will be happening throughout the city, FoPo will be well represented with good food, live entertainment, information/resource tables, and family-friendly fun. While it is a good excuse to party and get to know your neighbors, it is a worthy cause, too, meant to encourage community and police involvement in creating safe and healthy neighborhoods. No doubt, the increased community involvement and awareness in the neighborhood has brought about postive change. According to last statistics from a couple years ago, crime in the neighborhood had decreased 28 percent over the five previous years. KATU ran a story , too, a couple years ago discussing some of the changes our neighborhood has seen, and some of the impact National Night Out has made. This event aims to keep the momentum going and strengthen local pride in the Foster-Powell community. And just as last year’s event demonstrated, there’s already plenty of it. So mark your calendars, and make sure to come show off that pride on August 7th.