Ogle County invites public to celebrate National Night Out

Event set for Aug. 3 at BJ Way Park in Byron

BYRON — Ogle County citizens will have the opportunity to meet and interact with law enforcement officers on a whole different level next week during National Night Out.

“National Night Out is probably one of my favorite events of the year,” Ogle County Sheriff Brian VanVickle said. “It gives them [deputies] the opportunity to interact and play games with the kids. It brings a different side to law enforcement for the community.”

Ogle County’s third National Night Out is scheduled for Aug. 3, from 5-8 p.m., in BJ Way Park. The park is behind the Byron Fire Department.

The Ogle County Sheriff’s Office is partnering with the Byron Police Department and the Byron Fire Department, VanVickle said. The sheriff’s office has partnered with Oregon law enforcement in the past, but try to move the event around the county, he said.

Planned activities include: a display of emergency vehicles; K-9 demonstrations; water activities; bounce house and inflatable slide; and food and drink, including a Kona Ice Truck.

“National Night Out is really a community picnic — that’s kind of the philosophy behind it,” VanVickle said. “It allows interaction at a very intimate level with the community and shows the human side of law enforcement.”

More than 16,000 communities from all 50 states, U.S. Territories, Canadian cities and military bases worldwide observe the event. In all, 38 million people on average participate in “America’s night out against crime.”

The first National Night Out took place on Aug. 7, 1984. It is sponsored by the National Association of Town Watch.