By Rikki King Herald Writer
The best way for communities to prevent crime is for neighbors to get to know each other, police say.
That’s the idea behind Tuesday’s National Night Out, an annual event with safety-themed festivities planned all over Snohomish County.
People are invited to spend the evening hanging out with their neighbors, police officers, firefighters and community leaders.
Most cities and towns in the county have either one large National Night Out party or individual block parties planned by neighborhood groups.
Monroe has one of the biggest city events, with up to 2,000 people expected in good weather, Monroe police spokeswoman Debbie Willis said.
Like many of the National Night Out events, Monroe’s features safety-themed displays, booths and games. People also can check out police and fire rigs.
This year, Mukilteo police even have a military fly-over planned, officer Kristal Kania said.
A fly-over from a squadron based at Whidbey Island Naval Air Station is expected at about 5:30 p.m.
The maritime patrol squadron VP-69 also plans to fly overhead in a P3C Orion aircraft.
The block parties in Lynnwood are fun, but share an important message, Lynnwood police spokeswoman Shannon Sessions said.
People who know their neighbors are quicker to realize when something’s wrong, Sessions said. They can help each other not just by reporting suspicious activities but also during natural disasters, bad weather and power outages.
People can know who may need extra help, and who can lend it.
“You know what’s going on in your neighborhood,” she said. “You’re more likely to communicate with each other when something goes wrong.”
National Night Out also gives people a chance to talk to police and other city officials when there isn’t a pressing emergency, Sessions said.
“It just gives us all an opportunity to reach out and meet our residents face to face,” she said.
Reporter Gale Fiege contributed to this story.
Rikki King: 425-339-3449; firstname.lastname@example.org
Arlington:5 to 7 p.m. Arlington Municipal Airport property, south end. (Access at 172nd Street NE and 51st Avenue NE.)
Bothell: Block parties.
Brier:6 p.m., Brier Park, 2903 228th Street SW.
Edmonds:Was held July 31.
Everett: Block parties, listed here: http://tinyurl.com/EPDNNO.
Gold Bar:6:30 to 9 p.m. Parade starts at Gold Bar Family Grocer to Gold Bar Elementary School.
Granite Falls:5 to 8 p.m., on the grassy field east of N. Granite Avenue.
Lake Stevens:5 to 9 p.m., Main Street and North Cove Park.
Marysville:Shared with Tulalip.
Mill Creek:Shared with Snohomish County.
Monroe: Starting at 6 p.m., Lake Tye Park.
Mountlake Terrace:6 to 9 p.m., Evergreen Playfield, 22205 56th Ave. West.
Mukilteo:4 to 8 p.m. the Mukilteo Family YMCA, 10601 47th Place West, in addition to block parties.
Sultan:Shared with Gold Bar.
Tulalip:6 to 8 p.m., Tulalip Amphitheatre, 10400 Quil Ceda Blvd.
Island County:3 to 8 p.m., Windjammer Park, Oak Harbor.
Snohomish County:5 to 8 p.m., Willis Tucker Park, 6705 Puget Park Drive, Snohomish.