IPD shares games, hot dogs, safety tips

July 28, 2009

By Chantelle Lusebrink

Issaquah Police officers will celebrate the 26th annual National Night Out event. While they’re cooking free hot dogs, they need residents to come eat them.“Last year, we had 200 people, which is incredible, but we’re hoping to have more this year,” said Officer Karin Weihe, coordinator for the event.

The event was founded by the National Association of Town Watch, a nonprofit crime-prevention organization.

“National Night Out stresses the importance of a partnership between the community and the police department,” Sgt. Scott Trial, another coordinator for the event, wrote in an e-mail. This is the second year the Issaquah Police Department has participated.

At the event, there will be information from local service providers regarding personal safety, disaster preparedness and home safety. Officers will answer questions about home protection, neighborhood incidents, proper reporting of incidents or crimes, and how neighborhoods can better protect themselves.

“We as the police can not be everywhere,” Trial wrote. “We rely on the public to be aware, and report crimes and suspicious activity to us when they observe it going on.”

Issaquah’s Community Emergency Response Team members will hand out information about disaster preparedness and emergency action plans, Weihe said.

“So often, police and fire won’t be the first responders in a disaster,” she said. “It is up to the neighborhood and themselves to be prepared.”

Volunteers from Swedish and Overlake hospitals will be available to answer questions, as will officials from the state’s Department of Fish and Wildlife.

Residents can bring personal files, statements and old medical information for free shredding onsite by the Shred It Service to promote responsible shredding of personal information to reduce the possibility of identity theft.

Police will also collect and dispose of any old prescription medications residents may have, Weihe said, so they don’t accidentally get in the wrong hands.

This year, police are also incorporating pet safety. Riverdog and a canine unit from Normandy Park will provide demonstrations and information about how best to keep your pets safe in summer and winter.

“This time of year, we get a lot of hot dog calls,” Weihe said about people leaving their dogs in hot cars.

To make it fun, police officers cook food for the community including free hot dogs, beverages and chips, sponsored by DLY Construction and Costco.

There is also a face-painting station for children, free stickers, tours of an Eastside Fire & Rescue fire truck and police vehicles, and games in the park.

Parents can have their children fingerprinted for identification kits, coordinated by Target.

Police really hope the event acts as a service to the community, Weihe said.

“We’re trying to establish that police/community partnership by getting out there, so they can get to know us and the services we provide and we can get to know them,” she said. “It takes everyone to keep everyone safe.”

National Night Out

5-7 p.m. Aug. 4

Issaquah City Hall

130 E. Sunset Way

Free

Reach Reporter Chantelle Lusebrink at 392-6434, ext. 241, or clusebrink@isspress.com. Comment on this story at www.issaquahpress.com.

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