Friday, September 6, 2013
By ELISE McKEOWN SKOLNICK
The Wickliffe Block Watch, Austintown Township Trustees, and Austintown Police Department participated in a National Night Out event Aug. 6.
The event, offered in Austintown Township Park, was part of a nationwide night out meant to encourage members of the community to come out and get to know their neighbors and neighborhoods. It was the first such event offered in Austintown.
Participants had a chance to see police cars, fire trucks and ambulances, and talk with emergency personnel. Also included were a bounce around, face painting, clowns and free hot dogs. People had a chance to dunk Austintown Trustee Jim Davis and Austintown Police Detective Jeff Toth in a dunk booth.
It was prior to the regular Concert in the Park Series on Tuesdays in the park.
Brittany Barone of Boardman and her step-daughter, Lily Tillery like the concerts.
“We’ve been coming to the concerts in the park every Tuesday,” Barone said. “So then we found out there was all this other stuff, so we came early. She was really excited about the bounce house and the face painting.”
Tillery said she had fun in the bounce house, but was having second thoughts about the face painting.
Zachary and Scotty Tucker of Canfield were excited about the emergency vehicles. Both want to be police officers when they grow up.
“They’re infatuated with cops and ambulances and all that stuff,” their mother, Gina Tucker, said.
Gina said the event was fun.
“They’re having a great time,” she added.
Scotty said he likes police cars because they’re set up so criminals can’t escape.
Zachary used a stethoscope to listen to his mother’s heart. He liked sitting on the cot in the ambulance.
After jumping in the bounce around and checking out the various emergency vehicles, the family ate some of the food offered at the event, such as french fries.
National Night Out began in 1984 as an effort to promote involvement in crime prevention activities, police-community partnerships, neighborhood camaraderie and to send a message to criminals letting them know neighborhoods are organized and fighting back.