PORT JERVIS—Port Jervis held its eighth annual National Night Out celebration on Aug. 4. The event began with families receiving blue Port Pride t-shirts. The Port Jervis High School football team was out in full force sporting bright red jerseys.
Horses from the Otisville Correctional Institute led the Proud to be Drug Free parade. Fire departments from Port Jervis, Sparrow Bush, Huguenot, and Matamoras followed the marchers enthusiastically blowing their horns. Mayor Kelly Decker walked with other city officials and Police Chief William Worden mingled with the marchers and helped to make the event run smoothly.
The National Night Out party at Riverside Park was attended by a few thousand from the Tri-State area.
Mayor Kelly Decker hoped the evening would generate a bond between citizens and city officials. “As far as the community goes, they look at the people who run the city and the police department and they say ‘Hey, you know what, they are regular people, too, and they want a community that’s safe for all of us,” Decker said.
“This important event is a celebration of our community’s commitment to improving the quality of life for our residents, especially our youth, through the promotion of positive, healthy life styles,” the city’s website said.
“This can only be accomplished through building strong partnerships between the community, local health and human service providers, faith based organizations, local businesses, schools, civic organizations and emergency services organizations (Police, Fire, EMS) community,” according to the city’s website.
Several communities in Orange County took part in the event: Highland Falls, Middletown, New Windsor, Newburgh, Port Jervis, Sparrow Bush, Wallkill, and West Point.
The national organizers say this promotes police-community partnerships to make neighborhoods “safer, better places to live,” by providing a positive way to see law enforcement. The hope is that neighborhoods will host parties, parades, and festivals with an emphasis on youth.
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