Monroe County National Night Out returns Aug. 3

Nearly 900 people attended the Monroe County National Night held in 2019. Last year’s event was cancelled due to crowd concerns because of the COVID pandemic. Officials say they are looking forward to seeing people again during this year’s event scheduled Aug. 3 in Tomah’s Winnebago Park. Contributed photo

Monroe County emergency services personnel are looking forward to connecting with the public during this year’s Monroe County National Night Out Aug. 3 in Tomah’s Winnebago Park. There is no charge to attend the event scheduled from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.

While last year’s event was cancelled due to crowd concerns because of the COVID pandemic, Tomah Police Chief Scott Holum said it will be great to see people again. “I think it’s going to be refreshing for everybody,” Holum said. “For the emergency service workers and the public, it has been a trying time over the past year, so we are looking forward to getting back out there and the way it used to be.”

Even though this is the first National Night Out as Tomah Police Chief, Holum said the event is not new to him. “It brings citizens and emergency service personnel together,” he said. “They are able to see us in a difference capacity and allows us to interact with citizens and brings us together and builds relationships in the community.” Holum had

Holum described Tomah as a safe community adding that National Night Out helps to enforce and build relationships. “When you look at the landscape across the country, we are not immune to crimes or harmful events in our community, but for the most part, it’s a safe area to work. We have a lot of great community partners, great emergency service workers and great citizens; and we all work together.”

Holum said residents who have not attended National Night Out should make plans to be there. “It’s important for the public to attend to get to know what services are available, and what kind of safety tips can be provided to help them stay safe at home.”

Holum singled out Tomah Police officer Melanie Marshall for her work with the event. “I think she’s been to all 18 of them and a lot of this would not happen on our end if it wasn’t for her.”

Marshall is part of a volunteer committee made up of area law enforcement agencies, staff from the City of Tomah and Tomah Health. Event organizers are asking people who attend the event to join this year’s theme by dressing as their favorite super hero. “Even though they may not consider themselves heroes; police officers, firefighters, EMT’s, first responders, and hospital staff are heroes in the jobs they do every day and that’s why we want to put them in the spotlight, ” Tomah Health marketing & public relations director Eric Prise said.

More than 40 not for profit organizations will have various exhibits, informational booths and displays featuring nutrition, school bus safety, weather storm spotting, parenting tips, water safety, home electricity safety, seat belt use, boating safety and compression only CPR.

Officials ask residents to park in the Tomah High School parking lot and walk across Butts Avenue to enter Winnebago Park, located adjacent to Lake Tomah.

Children three to 15 years old can learn safety lessons for riding a bicycle during the Tomah Police Department’s Bike Safety Expo from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. The expo will include safety tips and on-site bicycle licensing. Parents must be present, and children are reminded to have a bike and helmet. Prizes will be awarded after bicycle course stations close at 5:45 p.m. All stations must be completed to qualify for the drawings. Children must be present to win prizes. The first 250 children will receive a complimentary backpack with school supplies provided by Walmart of Tomah.

Monroe County’s Combined Tactical Unit will present a demonstration at 7 p.m. followed by a mock crash featuring area fire and rescue units. Food and refreshment sales will be available, and there will be children’s activities.

Introduced in 1984 by the National Association of Town Watch (NATW), National Night Out is a nonprofit, crime prevention organization that works in cooperation with thousands of crime watch groups and law enforcement agencies throughout the country. Locally, officials know it helps build relationships that create safe communities.

Over the past years, the Monroe County NNO has been recognized by the National Association of Town Watch (NATW) for outstanding participation In ‘America’s Night Out Against Crime.’

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