Homewood, Flossmoor police departments host National Night Out festivities on Aug. 7

  Families line up to get a peek at a UCAN
  medical helicopter during the 2017 National 
  Night Out event in Homewood. Unless it gets 
  an emergency call, the helicopter is expected to 
  make an appearance again this year.
  file photos)


Police departments in Homewood and Flossmoor are hosting National Night Out events Aug. 7 in settings where officers can interact with residents and explain how local law enforcement is working to keep our communities safe. 
   Flossmoor Police Officer
  Doug Merkle tells Daniel
  Folaju, 8, about all the
  equipment in a police
  vehicle during the
  department's Night Out 
  event in 2017.

National Night Out has been called “a party with an important purpose,” according to Homewood Events Manager Allisa Opyd.  "It is an evening filled with summertime fun and an opportunity to get to know the women and men who serve and protect."
National Night Out is designed to generate support and participation in local crime prevention awareness by strengthening the neighborhood and police community partnership.
Flossmoor’s Night Out activities will take place from 5 to 8 p.m. in the parking lot next to the village hall at 2800 Flossmoor Road.
Tours of the police station will be conducted and children’s games will be offered. Police Chief Michael Pulec will cook for participants and a flyover by the Chicago Police Department’s helicopter is scheduled. The village, along with the Homewood-Flossmoor Park District, is hosting a bouncy house for kids.
  Homewood Police Chief 
  Bill Alcott gives a high
  five to his water balloon 
  contest partner at the 
  2017 National Night Out 

Another highlight of the Flossmoor event is the first-ever police department Beard Olympics. Ten Flossmoor officers have been growing beards since May and Night Out participants can judge the department’s best facial hair by making donations to Special Olympics.
In Homewood, the annual event has evolved into a mini-festival that fills Irwin Park with activities that help kids and police officers have fun together. 
Events in Homewood will take place from 5 to 8 p.m. at Irwin Park, 18120 Highland Ave. 
The evening will begin with the singing of the National Anthem by the combined James Hart School Summer Camp Choir and Homewood-Flossmoor High School Choir.
An emergency medical helicopter will land in the park just west of the band shell, always a popular feature for kids.
Events include a water balloon toss with police officers, ice cream eating contest and music. Food from Homewood restaurants will be offered. Homewood Science Center programs will be on display and participants from anti-drug and bullying programs at H-F and Hart will be on hand. 
As part of Homewood’s 125th anniversary, historic photos from the 1900s will be available and local historians will discuss the role of police officers during that period.
The village will sponsor a community relations table with giveaways and information on how to have a block party. 
“Turn on Your Porch Light” is also part of National Night Out. Homeowners are encouraged to turn on their front porch light in support of National Night Out as a symbol of solidarity against crime.
According to National Association of Town Watch, in 2017, 16,377 communities in the United States participated and Nationally 38.6 million people participated in National Night Out.

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