~ PVN staff report
Communities all across the country will be celebrating National Night Out on Tuesday, Aug. 3.
After cancelling last year’s events in Luray and Stanley due to the COVID-19 pandemic, both events are gearing up for Tuesday’s festivities.
“National Night Out enhances the relationship between neighbors and law enforcement while bringing back a true sense of community,” reads a statement on the event’s official website. “Furthermore, it provides a great opportunity to bring police and neighbors together under positive circumstances.”
The community-building event first began nationwide in 1984 and has grown to involve 38 million neighbors across 16,000 communities. It became an annual event in Stanley about a decade ago and drew more than 600 attendees in 2019. Luray began the tradition in 2019 and drew 200 to 300 residents out for its inaugural event.
On Tuesday, the Luray Police Department will host a variety of activities from 6 to 8 p.m. in the park-and-ride lot just off Route 340 near the Luray-Hawksbill Greenway. Activities will include a rock-climbing wall, as well as food and drinks.
The evening will not only highlight law enforcement, but other agencies will also be “showing off” their equipment and services such as the Virginia State Police, Shenandoah National Park, the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, local K-9 units, Virginia Forestry Department, Page County EMS, Luray Fire Department, the Luray Rescue Squad and the Page Alliance for Community Action.
The Stanley Police Department will host activities from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Hawksbill Recreation Park, including a free swim night at the Hawksbill Pool. The event will also feature a free hot dog cooked up by Stanley Councilman Bruce Stoneberger and a free drink for attendees. The Stanley Fire Department, Stanley Rescue Squad and members of PACA will be present as well.
“National Night Out is an annual community-building campaign that promotes police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie to make our neighborhoods safer, more caring places to live,” the NNO website states.