It was a good night for building the bridge, as dozens of families gathered at the Love Civic Center on Tuesday for National Night Out.
National Night Out is an annual community-building event that promotes community policing and neighborhood camaraderie, according to the National Association of Town Watch website.
Local businesses donated 30 bicycles and 2 TVs to give away tickets and drive the winners crazy.
Paris police chief Richard Salter said when he took advantage of the free hot dogs at the two-hour event, he said, “I wish there were more people in attendance, but I’d like to encourage all children to ride their bikes home.” It is,” he said.
Donating organizations include Paris Chevrolet, Paris Ford Lincoln Inc., Toyota of Paris, Jay Hodge Dodge Chrysler Jeep Ram of Paris, Matthews Honda of Paris, Whitaker’s Towing, Jerry Pitcock 24 Hour Wrecker & Recovery Service, Gavelin Towing & Recovery, Chicken Express, Dairy Queen, Flowers Baking Company, Mac’s Wholesale & Vending, Southern Vending.
National Night Out is held on the first Tuesday in August, but in Texas and some other areas, the event is postponed to October due to weather.
“It’s an evening where the community can come together and enjoy a little fellowship with each other,” said Curtis Garrett, a spokesperson for the Paris Police.
“They can get to know the first responders. We like to stay in touch with the community because it pleases us too,” he said.
Multiple non-profits, local businesses and community organizations were on site, including The Salvation Army, Carter Bradcare, Paris Ford, AT&T, CitySquare Paris, and the REACH Center.
Salvation Army volunteers handed out toys and board games, while children spun wheels for prizes at Lamar County Climb Stoppers and AT&T tables.
Children enjoyed a first responder bounce house in the shape of an ambulance supervised by Paris EMS employees.
A real life ambulance, fire engine and 2 SWAT military trucks from Paris were on display for the kids to enjoy. However, multiple service calls resulted in EMS and firefighters rushing to the emergency overnight.
Garrett said several businesses not only donated groceries, but also stayed to provide food and support National Night Out.
“Several people came to help,” said Garrett. “All the people in town who have services for children showed up and told people what they do and what services they provide.
“So I think it was a pretty good night,” he said.
https://theparisnews.com/news/article_2c02f4fc-4588-11ed-ae61-7f4d3bf5260e.html Building Camaraderie: Community Gathers at National Night Out | News