Know your neighbors

Crescenta Valley and Glendale residents are invited to attend two separate events of education and outreach. National Night Out will be observed next Tuesday and again on Thursday by local residents and personnel from Glendale Police Department, Crescenta Valley Sheriff's Station, California Highway Patrol, city officials and firefighters as well as organizations that help in the prevention of crime. Crescenta Valley will be observing the event from 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 5, at Two Strike Park, 5107 Rosemont Ave. The city of Glendale will hold its National Night Out beginning at 6:30 p.m. beginning on Aug. 7 at the Vietnam Memorial at Ocean View Boulevard and Honolulu Avenue in Montrose.

The goal is to give the community a chance not only to meet the law enforcement members working within their district, but to meet their neighbors.

“The purpose is to bring people out into the neighborhoods in the evening, to empower the citizens and to motivate the community to maintain the safety of their neighborhood,” said Sgt. John Gilkerson, Glendale Community Policing Unit.

Deputy Jorge Valdivia, Crescenta Valley Sheriff's community relations coordinator, said that although Crescenta Valley is a close community, there are areas where neighbors don't know each other.

“And it's important for new residents to meet neighbors and community members,” Valdivia said.

National Night Out was started in 1984 by the National Association of Town Watch, a nonprofit, crime prevention organization. The goal from the beginning of the program was to heighten awareness and strengthen participation in local anti-crime efforts.

Gilkerson said that although Glendale does not have a high rate of crime it is important for people to come out, along with law enforcement and safety teams, and take a proactive stance in crime prevention.

Local fire firefighters and crime prevention organizations will also be on hand to answer any questions from the community.

Glendale will meet at the Vietnam Memorial, walk down Honolulu Avenue east toward Verdugo Boulevard, cross the street and walk west along Honolulu Avenue.

At the end of the walk, everyone is invited to enjoy an ice cream social at the parking lot across from Glendale Fire Station 29. Along with Glendale Police, residents can meet Glendale Police K9 unit, Special Weapons and Tactics [SWAT] team and firefighters. The Glendale Park Rangers will also have their portable rock wall on hand.

“It's not a fair but its not a seminar, either,” Sgt. Gilkerson said.

It is an opportunity for community members to get to know what is being done to help keep Glendale safe and what residents can do, he added.

Strengthening neighborhood spirit and partnership with local law enforcement and safety personnel is another goal of the night, according to Crescent Valley Sheriff's Capt. David Silversparre.

“It is a chance to come out in the evening, meet each other and get to know each other,” Valdivia said.

La Cañada residents' National Night Out will be from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Aug. 5 on Manistee Drive, above Foothill Boulevard just east of Ocean View Boulevard. Manistee is a cul-de-sac that will be closed for the event.

mary.okeefe@latimes.com

(818) 790-8774, ext. 21


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