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20110802 NationalNightOut Mission JB 0110The Mission High Flyers performing at National Night Out in Mission last year as a large crowd enjoys the entertainment. Progress Times photo by Jim BrunsonMISSION – Mission Police Department, together with Mission Crime Stoppers, will host their 17th Annual National Night Out (NNO) with a big block party at 6:30 p.m. August 7, at Leo Peña Placita Park, across from H-E-B on South Conway.

Mission Police Chief Martin Garza said this is an opportunity for the community to come together and take a stand together against crime. The event also gives the community an opportunity to meet their local law enforcement and officials, said Garza.

According to NNO’s website, the event is designed to heighten crime and drug prevention awareness; generate support for, and participation in, local anticrime programs; strengthen neighborhood spirit and police-community partnerships; and send a message to criminals letting them know that neighborhoods are organized and fighting back.

The event will feature food, entertainment and information from local noon-profit organizations such as Mothers Against Drunk Driving, Legal Aid and Mujeres Unidas/Women United. Mission Crime Stoppers and MPD’s victim assistance representatives will also be at the event.

Garza said it is a time of sharing information to the community and getting to know who your officers are. Information will be shared from the non-profit organizations, including topics on how to not become a victim to crime.

Free school supplies will also be handed out to children.

“The event keeps growing every year,” said Garza. The goal is to pass out at least 1,200 bags of school supplies to residents.

Last year, approximately 1,000 bags and backpacks were passed out by Mission Crime Stoppers. Pct. 3 Constable’s office also passed an additional 1,000 bags and City of Palmhurst Police passed out 500 bags.

Other area cities have been invited to the event as well, said Garza. Sullivan City, La Joya, Peñitas, Palmview, Alton and Palmhurst have all been invited to attend the event and pass out school supplies to the community.

Donations of school supplies and monetary donations are still being accepted until the date of the event, said Garza. Any monetary donation will be used to purchase school supplies. Donations can be dropped off at the Mission Police Department. Items needed include crayons, pencils, scissors, markers, wide ruled paper, rulers, folders, glue, pens, and erasers. Optional items sought are one-inch binders, dividers and highlighters.

For more information, call Amy Tijerina at 655-0983 or Inv. Romeo Ortega at 458-9046.

MPD will be putting together the bags of school supplies on August 6, at 5:30 p.m. at the department. Volunteers interested in helping are asked to call Tijerina or Ortega.

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