Once again, Clinton will participate in the National Night Out program, a nationwide initiative to promote safe communities. This year’s event will take place from 3 to 7 p.m. Aug. 6. There is no cost for the event.

“It’s a great night to get away,” Jennifer McColley of the Citizen’s Police Academy Alumni said. “It’s a wonderful night out, free from crime.”

Clinton police officers, Sheriff’s deputies and other emergency workers will be on hand to interact with community members. McColley said the event is an opportunity for residents to get some face time with local law enforcement to help build up trust and rapport.

“It’s a chance to get to know law enforcement,” McColley said. “To build that bridge.”

A K-9 unit will also be present, as will a Haz-Mat team from Davenport. Visitors will be able to mingle and play games with emergency personnel. This familiarity will hopefully result in a community more aware of how to keep crime at bay, according to McColley.

Capt. Tom Bohle, Services Division commander for the Clinton Police Department, said the event is a great opportunity to do something fun as a family.

“There are going to be so many events for kids and families,” Bohle said. “Meet your neighbor, do stuff as a community and see what our community has to offer.”

Kids train rides will be available, as will a petting zoo. The National Guard has also made a 20-foot climbing wall available. Free food and drink will be provided throughout the evening.

“Where else can you go and get a free night out on a Saturday?” Bohle said.

Local community members, businesses and agencies will also participate in the event. All prizes and time have been donated.

National Night Out has been recognized in Clinton for five years. However, this year’s event will be unique, as it will celebrate and remember the life of Capt. Charles Witt, a former Clinton police officer who was instrumental in bringing the event to the area. Witt died earlier this year.

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