About 200 community members turned out Tuesday for National Night Out at Logvy Park for free hot dogs, popcorn, snow cones, and a chance to meet with local law enforcement in a fun and relaxed atmosphere.
The second annual event was free to the public and hosted by the Calistoga Police Department.
The event is an opportunity to ask questions and build community relationships, said Calistoga Police Officer Samantha Arlen, who is organized the event.
“We’re a small enough community so we can engage and talk to each other, so everyone knows we’re here to help,” she said.
This is the 35th year for the event that takes place in all fifty states, U.S. territories and military bases worldwide on the first Tuesday in August.
Millions of neighbors across thousands of communities take part in the event that promotes police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie to make neighborhoods safer, more caring places to live.
About 250–300 people attended last year’s event in Calistoga, Arlen said.
As temperatures peaked in the high 80s Tuesday evening, the Napa County District Attorney snow cone machine was a popular stop. The DA’s booth presented those who stopped by with information on help for victims and witnesses of crime. Victim services advocate Irma Luna was glad to have one-on-one time with residents.
“Every year in Napa we have about 100 people in front of us so this is more intimate,” she said.
Luna spoke with Southern California resident Fernando Torres, who is visiting and hoping to get a job with the City of Calistoga.
“I love it here. I took this as an opportunity to reach out in the community,” he said.
The Calistoga Rotary Club hosted a free barbecue at the event, with hot dogs, baked beans from Buster’s, chips and buns from Cal Mart and drinks proved by Crystal Geyser.
“We’re really pleased to help out and support the community. We are long-time sponsors, and as part of the community, service is our goal,” said long-time Rotary member Kevin Eisenberg who had the job of roasting hot dogs in the very warm weather. “And this is really a hot grill,” he added.
Studio on Main also provided fresh-popped popcorn.
There were plenty of family-oriented activities, including kid-friendly activities from UpValley Family Centers. Many got their faces painted.
Wine Country Animal Lovers brought three kittens up for adoption, and the fire department also brought a fire truck for kids big and small to explore.
The police department also held a raffle for two Ring doorbells. The doorbell sends alerts to a phone app when someone comes to the door when you’re not home. The doorbell comes with a camera and you can talk through it, Arlen said, and it’s easily installed.
“They are awesome. I can’t say enough about it,” she said.