Across outer East Portland, it’s ‘National Night Out’ party time again

Find out where you can go to meet your neighbors, learn how prevent crime, and have a great time, at this annual event. Don’t be disappointed by showing up on the wrong evening! Read this, and discover which events are taking place on a date other than Tuesday, August 3rd …

Gathering at Portland City Hall for the National Night Out kick-off event, Portland City Commissioner Amanda Fritz, Crime Prevention Coordinators Roseanne Lee, Jenni Bernheisel, and Teri Poppino – all with Portland Police Bureau East Precinct (Hazelwood’s district) Officer Matt Estes – say they’re enthusiastic about this year’s event.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
Although they call it “America’s Night Out Against Crime” – nowhere in the nation is this annual event celebrated better than right here, in outer East Portland.

Read on and discover all about the 27th Annual “National Night Out” (NNO) celebration – the unique crime/drug prevention program that takes place (mostly) on the evening of Tuesday, August 3.

“In outer East Portland, many neighborhoods and group are holding NNO events,” said Crime Prevention Specialist Rosanne Lee, who works out of the East Portland Neighborhood Office. “The focus of this annual event, held on the first Tuesday of August, is prevention of crime and drug activity. It sends a message to criminals that neighbors are getting organized to fight crime and reduce the fear of crime in their part of community.”

In addition to heightening crime prevention awareness and generating support for, and participation in, our anti-crime programs, Lee noted that these parties are a fun way to boost neighborhood spirit and highlight police-community partnerships. “And, neighbors can also learn valuable tips for emergency preparedness.”

This year, the Hands and Words Project is being featured at Portland National Night Parties.

New project to be introduced at NNO events
“I’ve challenged my scheduler to create a route that permits me visit as many National Night Out parties as I can,” Portland City Commissioner Amanda Fritz told us at the downtown kickoff party on July 27.

“We’re introducing something a little more serious this year,” Fritz explained. “It is called the ‘Hands and Words Project’. We are asking people to pledge that they will not use their hands, or their words, for hurting themselves or for others. Frankly, we at the Office of Neighborhood Involvement [of which Fritz is in charge] have had enough of violence in the City. We have particularly experienced far too much violence against women and children. We want people to take a stand against violent words and deeds.”

Tammy Mills and Cammie Allie of Glendoveer Estates say they want to share their event with folks both in outer East Portland and in the Rockwood area.

Invites neighborhood to apartment complex party
In addition to dignitaries appearing at the kick-off event, party planners – such as Tammy Mills, the manager of Glendoveer Estates, NE 162nd Avenue and NE Glisan Street – said she’s looking forward to hosting a NNO event on August 3. “A great four-piece local band called The Standoff will provide live music. And, there’s food, a great swimming pool, and plenty of games for the kids.”

Their event isn’t just for their residents, Mills added. “We’re welcoming the entire neighborhood to come by – including folks in the Rockwood area – from 6 p.m. until 10 p.m. this evening.”

Portland Police Bureau East Precinct Commander Bill Walker, and EPIC Coordinator David Smith, pause for a photo at the NNO kick-off party.

Police commander values community contacts
“National Night Out is a great opportunity for neighbors to come out, sit down, talk about what’s going on in the neighborhood,” commented Portland Police Bureau East Precinct Commander Bill Walker.

“And also, having representatives of the other police and fire bureaus come by is a good thing,” Walker added. “It gives us a chance to mingle with citizens, one-on-one, in a non-emergency setting. This helps both to reduce crime, and the fear of crime. NNO events provide a great setting in which we can talk about – as neighbors – how we can increase the livability and safety of our community.”

Volunteers Steve Aubrey and Tom Bossert are two of the chefs who spent the afternoon and evening cooking up dinner for 500 last year at the Parkrose Heights Association of Neighbors National Night Out party they held at Knott Park. East Portland News archive photo

Where to find a National Night Out party
in your area on Tuesday, August 3

Argay Neighborhood Association – NE 141st & Failing at Argay Park from 6:00 p.m. until 8:30 p.m. You’ll find FBI and ATF exhibits, Adult Immunization, and Blood Lead Testing, Games for Children and Ice Cream.

Glendoveer Estates – 2609 SE 145th Avenue, from 3:00 p.m. until 9:00 p.m. They’ve got swimming, kids games, a cookout/BBQ and live music.

Lifegate Baptist Church – 208 SE 148th Avenue, from 6:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. It’s a “block party” they have planned, with music by their worship band.

Glenfair Neighborhood Association – NE 154th & NE Couch in Glenfair Park from 6:00 p.m. until 9:00 p.m. This event features live music with the River City Band, followed by a Movie in the Park.

Classique Floors – at 14127 SE Stark Street from 6:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. Come on by this great local company for a Cookout/BBQ and music!

Portland Adventist Academy – 1500 SE 96th Avenue from 6:00 p.m. until 8:30 p.m. This is always a great party in the Hazelwood neighborhood, just west of Adventist Medical Center. Hear live music, and enjoy Popcorn, Snow Cones, Watermelon, Live Music, Bounce House, Arts & Crafts, Clowns, Unicyclers and Community Organizations Information Booths.

Lents Neighborhood Association – at Lents Park, SE 92nd & Holgate from 6:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. They’re holding their traditional “Ice Cream Social” again this year. Hint: Come right at 6:00 p.m. – they serve the ice cream until it’s gone! They’ll also have community exhibits and other activities.

Mill Park Neighborhood Association – Their annual block party is at SE 113th & Yamhill from 6:00 p.m. until 8:30 p.m. in Mill Park. Hosts Todd & Angelica Baker (and neighbors) will again be firing up the grills and providing great hospitality.

Parkrose Heights Association of Neighbors – Folks in this area can look forward to a great party at Knott Park, at NE 117th Avenue at NE Knott Street. They’ll grill up hot dogs by the hundreds, have live music, kids entertainment and activities, community organization booths – and always lots of fun.

And, on Wednesday, August 4

Powellhurst-Gilbert Neighborhood Association – They’re taking over Gilbert Heights Park at 4209 SE 130th Avenue from 6:00 p.m. until 11:00 p.m. for a real neighborhood-wide party. Hot food, cold treats and lots of family-oriented activities will be provided, as they listen to live music by the band, The Sounds of Norman. Then, there will be plenty of popcorn will be on hand when the Movie in the Park starts at dusk.

Be sure to say hello when we come by to take photos of these events – and we’ll see you then.

© 2010 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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