A night for neighbors to unite

Night to Unite parties across Anoka County Aug. 6 gave people a chance to connect with their neighbors.

Anoka County Sheriff James Stuart said the annual Night to Unite event, which happens the first Tuesday evening of August, gives residents of all ages a chance to meet the public safety officials and be reminded that they appreciate the 911 calls.

“It’s a good opportunity for us to break down barriers and say, ‘You’re not wasting our time.’ We don’t want to see our citizens victimized,” Stuart said.

Police squad cars and fire trucks from multiple departments visited neighborhoods so kids would have the opportunity to sit in the front seat and look at all the dashboard buttons or sit in the back of police car to get some idea of what suspected criminals see when being taken to jail.

The Anoka Police Department handed out bike helmets at multiple parties. Many police departments and the sheriff’s office brought sticker tattoos or candy.

Some fire departments such as Andover and Ramsey let children shoot fire hoses.

Americans were not the only ones to enjoy the festivities. Two exchange students from Germany and one from Japan attended the community party in St. Francis.

Some examples of block party registration numbers through the police departments were 126 in Blaine, 96 for communities covered by the Anoka County Sheriff’s Office, 27 parties in Anoka and 13 in Spring Lake Park.

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