HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - Communities across the Palmetto State are partnering with local Public Safety to encourage crime prevention during The National Association of Town Watch's 31st National Night, "America's Night out against Crime".
NATW is a non-profit organization dedicated to preventing crime by implementing programs that include neighborhood watch groups, law enforcement agencies, state and regional crime prevention associations, businesses, civic groups and individuals devoted to keeping communities safe. Introduced in 1984 by NATW's Executive Director, Matt Peskin, National Night Out, "America's Night out against Crime", is designed for communities to fight back against crime. The event consistently occurs on every first Tuesday in August and now involves more than 37.8 million people and 16,124 communities from all fifty states, U.S. Territories, Canadian cities, and military bases worldwide.
The city of Conway announced earlier that they were participating in the crime watch activities. The annual crime watch will take place on August 5, at Conway City Senior Citizen Center on 1515 Mill Pond Road, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. There will be opportunities to meet with officers and community youth. Free hotdogs with chili and soft drinks will be served and all crime watch groups are invited.
Fifteen neighborhoods in Myrtle Beach are participating in the National Night Out. On August 5, there will be a variety of crime watch activities that range from ice cream socials to block parties. Here is a list of participating neighborhoods in Myrtle Beach:
• Sandygate Village: 3:00 p.m. – Main Office Area, 1011 Osceola Street
• South Myrtle: 4:00 p.m. – The Pond in Seaside Village
• Withers Swash: 4:00 p.m. – Spivey Park
• Piper's Pointe: 4:00 p.m. – Piper's Pointe Main Office, 1310 Piper's Pointe Lane
• Target: 4:00 p.m. – 1150 Seaboard Street
• The Avenues: 5:00 p.m. – 3806 North Ocean Boulevard
• Monticello: 5:00 p.m. – Main Office, 1300 Osceola Street
• Booker T. Washington: 5:00 p.m. – Futrell Park, Mr. Joe White Avenue
• The Oaks: 5:00 p.m. – 35th Avenue North, 600 Block
• The Dunes: 6:00 p.m. – Intersection of Club Drive and Wildwood Dunes Trail
• Forest Dunes: 6:00 p.m. – Intersection of Club Drive and Wildwood Dunes Trail
• Old Pine Lakes: 6:00 p.m. – Oak Circle
• Palmetto Greens: 6:00 p.m. – Pool House in Palmetto Greens
• Seagate: 6:00 p.m. – Corner of Spruce Drive and Swallow Avenue
• Emmens Preserve: 6:00 p.m. – Emmens Park
Myrtle Beach and Conway aren't the only cities fighting back against crime. Darlington City Police Department wants you to join them for National Night Out to Outshine Crime. This event will take place on Tuesday, August 5 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the City Pool on 101 Gary Street. There will be free admission to the pool for the first 100 people to attend. There will also be free food and drinks while supplies last.
Hartsville is watching out for crime in a fun way this year. Unlike the rest, this event will kick off on August 9 at 6:30 p.m. at Burry Park, on 131 Cargill Way. Firefighters, police officers, EMS personnel, the Darlington County Sheriff's Office and others will be present to educate the community about crime prevention. There will be games, movies and a celebrity appearance from Shannon Johnson, an Olympic gold medalist in ladies basketball and former WNBA star. "We are calling this year's National Night Out the 'People's Night Out' to emphasize this. We hope residents and families can join us for a fun evening while showing their support for a strong and safe community," said Police Chief James Hudson. In case of rain, the event will be moved to the Coach T.B. Thomas Sports Center at Byerly Park, on 701 West. Washington Street.
The Horry County Police Department will have National Night out on Tuesday as well. The event will be from 6:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. at the M.L. Brown Public Safety Building. There will be video games, food, drinks and more.
Lastly, Sheriff Lane Cribb and the Georgetown County Sheriff's Office invite residents in the area to their National Night Out. Their event will take place on August 5, from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Pleasant Hill Elementary Football Field on 127 Schoolhouse Drive in Hemingway, South Carolina. There will be fun, food, music, and games. There will also be an appearance from McGruff, the crime dog. More importantly, this event will heighten crime prevention awareness, generate support and participation in anti-crime programs, strengthen neighborhood spirit and community-police partnerships and send a message to criminals that neighborhoods are organized and fighting back.