Naperville gets early start to National Night Out with community event

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 Naperville kicked off its National Night Out celebrations a day early, with a free community event at the Fry Family YMCA on Monday night.

“National Night Out, two of my favorite days of the year because it’s right in line with what I love, and that’s connecting with the community,” said Naperville Chief of Police Jason Arres. “Tonight we’ve got a ton of activities out here, a lot of kids out here.”

Fun for all ages

The city’s National Night Out event featured games, activities, a magician, and a showing of Disney Pixar’s “Monsters, Inc.”

“We’ve got everything from superheroes hanging out with us,” said Arres. “We’ve got some of our specialty vehicles, some of our officers here, and then everybody’s favorite, there’s some games, some food, and then a movie night. So good times to be had by all.”

Arres enjoyed seeing the camaraderie between first responders and the local community.

“I look at it from the police side, but there (are) many other departments that participate in National Night Out,” said Arres. “So it just means bringing a bunch of people together to have conversations. Talk about what’s good, what we can work on. So for police, it’s an opportunity to give a commercial about what we’re doing, focusing on and concentrating on our job, which is to serve and protect the community.” 

Foster visits National Night Out

Among the attendees at Monday’s event was Congressman Bill Foster (IL-11).

“Naperville is at the very top of the list of good places to live for many reasons,” said Foster. “It’s a very safe community and it is safe because they maintain very good relations between the kids, citizens, and police force.”

Foster reminisced on visiting National Night Out celebrations with former Naperville Mayor George Pradel. He was excited to see the long-standing tradition back for another year of family fun.

“One of my fondest memories in Congress was going out with Mayor Pradel and visiting I don’t know how many parks on National Night Out,” said Foster. “It’s just such a wonderful thing to have neighborhoods come together to celebrate.”

National Night Out neighborhood events

National Night Out continues Tuesday, with more than 45 neighborhoods set to host local events featuring live music, food trucks, and more.

Representatives from Naperville’s police department, fire department, public works, and utility departments will attend many local events.

The list of participating neighborhoods and event times can be found on the city’s website.

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