Police, public connect at National Night Out

HOOVER – Hoover’s National Night Out on Tuesday, Aug. 1 brought together law enforcement and the residents it serves.

Thousands of people attended the event at The Grove Shopping Center off John Hawkins Parkway.

Hoover Police Chief Nick Derzis said National Night Out is an opportunity for residents and law enforcement officers to interact in a fun setting.

“This thing gets bigger and better every year,” Derzis said. “It’s just a good community event.”

For the first time, Hoover’s National Night Out featured several food trucks, which seemed to be popular, along with many other attractions.

Agencies including HPD; Hoover Fire Department; Drug Enforcement Administration; Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; National Guard; and Alabama Law Enforcement Agency had representatives at the event, with each offering activities for children and information about their responsibilities and tools.

One popular station was a tent where officers made identification kits for children.

The kits included information that would be helpful for law enforcement—such as the child’s name, age, fingerprints, a recent photo, physical description and identifying marks—in the event a child goes missing.

“We give them back all of that on a disc,” Derzis said. “God forbid, if anything happens, they’ll have that information that they can use.”

Other law enforcement units present at National Night Out included the HPD Motor Scouts, bomb squad, SWAT team and dive team.

About 6,000 or 7,000 people attended last year’s National Night Out in Hoover, and organizers expected around the same number of attendees this year.