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Police to Host 'National Night Out' at Town Square

Meet Murrieta police and other area law enforcement while enjoying free food and giveaways from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 7 in Town Square Park. The family-friendly event is being offered to the community free of charge.

The Murrieta Police Department extended an invitation to the citizens of Murrieta to participate in its upcoming annual National Night Out.

Free food and giveaways will be part of the family-friendly event scheduled from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 7 in , located behind and the .

Held in more than 15,000 communities in 2011, National Night Out is designed to heighten crime prevention awareness, strengthen neighborhood spirit and police-community relationships, according to a news release, and is to send a firm message to criminals, letting them know that "our community is organized and will FIGHT BACK!"

The event—in its 29th year nationally—is being offered to the Murrieta community free of charge.

"Locally, we had several hundred attend last year's event in Murrieta and this year we are anticipating the event to grow in attendance," said Murrieta police Capt. Dennis Vrooman.

The Murrieta Police Department is collaborating directly with its local Target stores in coordinating the event, he said.

"Target is a national corporate sponsor and coordinator for the event," Vrooman said.

The two Murrieta Targets, as well as stores from Temecula and Hemet, will be sponsoring a barbecue with free hot dogs and drinks, he said.

will be handing out free smoothie samples, and has committed to handing out food samples, he said.

stores will also have some great giveaways sponsored by local businesses and will be hosting a raffle to include iPod shuffles, school-ready backpacks, gift certificates from Juice It Up!, Buffalo Wild Wings and to name a few, he said.

The Murrieta Police Department will have several static displays and information available for public view, Vrooman said.

Displays will include the department’s SWAT truck and equipment, its DUI trailer, off-road enforcement motorcycles and its Police/Fire mobile command post. There will be also be several K-9 and Bloodhound demonstrations.

Other city departments, safety organizations and safety-related businesses have committed to attending the event with static displays and free safety information and child fingerprinting, Vrooman said.

These include the , Code Enforcement, , California Highway Patrol, Mercy Air Ambulance, Community Emergency Response Team, Police Volunteer Program, Safe Alternatives for Everyone, and gun store.

"The public is invited to come and picnic in the park with lawn chairs and pop-up style shades," Vrooman said.

For vendor information, contact Angie Taylor at angie.taylor@target.com.

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