After a nearly five-year hiatus, Rolling Meadows will bring together the community and its law enforcement officials for the city's National Night Out on Aug. 6. It is one of at least a half-dozen Northwest suburbs celebrating the event this year.
The event will be a chance for the community to put faces to the names of Rolling Meadows' police officers. "It's a night that we want to invite the community out and tell us what's going on," said Sgt. Tom Gadomski.
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The last Rolling Meadows Night Out was in 2008, and didn't return the following years because of budget restrictions.
This year, Crime Stoppers in Rolling Meadows stepped in and pushed for the event to be brought back.
Festivities will run from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Rolling Meadows Community Center, 3705 Pheasant Drive. The event includes a performance by the Jesse White Tumblers, arts and crafts supplied by Lowe's Home Improvement stores, music from Rock and Roll Radio, and free food and nonalcoholic beverages.
"This is just the start, and we hope to make this a yearly event," Gadomski said. "If it's a success, we'd love to grow. We're all taking ownership of the community by talking and making a network."
This year marks the 30th anniversary of the National Night Out program, started in 1984 as a way to create crime-prevention activities and to build partnerships between the police and the larger community, according to the National Association of Town Watch website.
National Night Out activities in the suburbs include:
•Arlington Heights: 4:30 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 6, North School Park, Eastman Street and Arlington Heights Road. This free event is sponsored by the Arlington Heights Park District. For information, visit ahpd.org or (847) 577-3000.
• Barrington: 6:30-8:30 p.m., Thursday, Aug. 8, at the intersection of Cook and Station Street in downtown. • Bartlett: National Night Out Family Tailgate and Pool Party, Friday, Aug. 2, Jim Jensen Pavilion, 696 W. Stearns Road. The Bartlett Police Department hosts the free tailgate party from 6 to 8 p.m. and then the pool party at the Bartlett Aquatic Center from 8 to 10 p.m. Attendees can ride CN's Little Obie Train, construct build-a-kits with Home Depot, enjoy magic tricks and face painting, watch a police K9 demonstration and a Flight For Life Helicopter landing, and play games with members of the police department. Limited free food and beverages will be served. For information, visit village.bartlett.il.us.
• Bartlett: 20th annual National Night Out Picnic in the Park: 5 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 6, Bartlett Park, 102 N. Eastern Ave. Hosted by the village of Bartlett, Bartlett Police Department, Bartlett Fire Protection District, and Bartlett Park District. Free giveaways, hot dogs, water, local business display tables, face painting, a stilt walker, watermelon eating contest, soccer skills, speed pitch and panning for gold exhibits. The event includes appearances by sporting team mascots, the Division BMX Stunt Team, Skydogz, Mix 101.9 FM Road Crew, Legoland Discovery Center of Chicago, and the Jesse White Tumblers. Free. For information, visit village.bartlett.il.us.
• Des Plaines: 5-8 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 6, North parking lot of Maine West High School, 1755 S. Wolf Road, Des Plaines. The event includes displays of police and fire department vehicles, presentations, a climbing wall, and face painters. A variety of educational/safety materials will be available. For information, call (847) 391-5410.
• Schaumburg: 6:30-8:30 p. m. Tuesday, Aug. 6, Meineke Recreation Center, 220 E. Weathersfield Way. The free event is packed with activities for the whole family designed to heighten crime and drug prevention awareness, strengthen neighborhood spirit and generate support for local anti-crime programs. From 6:30 to 7:30 p.m., there will be live music from a D.J., games for children, contests and sidewalk chalk play. Open swim in Meineke Pool from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. Barbecued concessions and drinks will be sold. For information, call (847) 985-2143 or visit parkfun.com.