On Tuesday, locals can see a Crescenta Valley Sheriff’s Station jail cell up close and without the usual attendant legal hassles when the station hosts an event in connection with National Night Out — a nationwide effort to strengthen partnerships between communities and local law enforcement.
From 5 to 8 p.m., the Briggs Avenue station will offer entertainment and important public safety information to participants of all ages in its lower parking lot. Classic cars from the Early Rodders club will be on display, and free hot dog dinners will be distributed as visitors peruse a number of booths set up by the California Highway Patrol, local chambers of commerce, the county library and more.
Parents can have their children fingerprinted as part of New York Life’s Child ID program and learn more about narcotics trends, while guided station tours give residents a peek behind the curtain of local law enforcement.
“It seems to be a highlight for a lot of people,” community services officer Dep. Alex Covian said of the tours. “It’s not a huge place, but it can be interesting for somebody who’s never been exposed to that sort of thing.”
Crescenta Valley Station Capt. Chris Blasnek says National Night Out is one more way sheriff’s staff reach out to the community to raise awareness about local law enforcement efforts and the importance of community policing.
“The whole thing is about creating partnerships and getting people involved in neighborhood watch [groups],” Blasnek said. “The best way I can describe it is ‘community camaraderie.’”
Started in 1984 under the aegis of Pennsylvania-based nonprofit National Assn. of Town Watch, the event was a way to unite neighborhood watch groups. Since then National Night Out has grown to include a number of community-focused events and organizations.
Still the core mission remains true, according to Blasnek.
“This is about bringing people on board and helping us combat crime,” the captain said. “So come see us, and we’ll show you around.”