Tuesday, Aug. 6, will be a day of countless celebrations across the country, including festivals, block parties, parades, fireworks extravaganzas and musical events.
It will mark another year of National Night Out, an annual occasion designed to enhance relationships between neighbors and law enforcement while bringing back a true sense of community.
In Johnston, National Night Out – which was started in 1984 by the National Association of Town Watch – will be an old-fashioned, backyard-style community cookout featuring fun, free food, fellowship, music and bounce houses.
“The Johnston Police Department’s annual National Night Out is a community building campaign to promote police-community partnerships to make our neighborhoods safe,” Johnston Police Chief Richard S. Tamburini said. “NNO provides a great opportunity to bring police and neighbors together under positive circumstances in a comfortable and easy way.”
Some 19 years ago, Tamburini founded NNO in Johnston with a specific goal to foster a feeling of security throughout what he called “our great community.”
Tamburini encouraged all residents to come to Johnston War Memorial Park to meet members of the police and fire departments while enjoying food, desserts and My Cousin Vinny’s unique and colorful bounce houses.
Tamburini, who has served for 55 years and counting, announced that Johnston Capt. Christopher Correia is chairing this year’s expanded celebration. Correia is receiving assistance along the way from Lt. Michael Babbitt and Sgt. Luca Lancellotti.
In keeping with tradition, veteran Johnston Patrolman Charles “Chuck” Psilopoulos will again serve as the event’s grillmaster, and his free menu will include sausage and pepper sandwiches, hot dogs and hamburgers.
A number of area businesses have also again stepped forward to support what Polisena and Tamburini hope will be the best NNO event yet with a record crowd. The event’s signature appetizer – pizza chips – have again been donated by Don DePetrillo of the The Original Italian Bakery.
“Unfortunately, one of our longtime suppliers was unable to participate this year,” Correia told the Sun Rise. “Without any hesitation, Mr. DePetrillo said he will be happy – and honored – to supply the sausage for those always-popular sandwiches.”
Correia also let it be known that Johnston’s NNO is a free event and an example of the JPD’s credo: “Working together, making a difference.”
Correia added that the Johnston Fire Department would have personnel on hand for the event, which will run from 5-8 p.m.
“Bring the family, bring your blankets and chairs and enjoy what many people have for years called a reunion-like celebration-community cookout,” said Correia, who is commander of the department’s Special Services Bureau. “We’ve got disc jockey Joe Vingi coming to play music, so please, come to War Memorial Park and enjoy the fun and food. And remember, together, we can help make our communities safer, more caring places to live.”