A night out on the town

Local law enforcement, communities meet and greet at annual event
By: Jenifer Gee Journal Staff Writer
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When emergency vehicles appear at several Tuesday night parties, they will be a welcome sight for Auburn area neighborhoods hosting those parties. Tuesday is National Night Out. The night is a national event designed to prevent drug and crime activity in neighborhoods. Local law enforcement will travel in convoys along with the Auburn Fire Department to visit several Auburn area communities. “We go out into neighborhoods all over Placer County and meet with residents one-on-one in a positive environment,” said Dena Erwin, Placer County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman. Erwin said usually law enforcement rolls into neighborhoods with their lights flashing and sirens blaring because it’s fun for the children. They pass out goodies for kids and talk to neighbors who usually celebrate the night with a community barbecue. Auburn Greens is one of those communities that will join celebrate National Night Out. Ron Roskelley, Auburn Greens Homeowner’s Association general manager, said the entire residential community will gather for one giant black party. He said this is the fifth year that community has participated in the night. “We try to make it a night when everybody can come together and do things together,” Roskelley said. “We have a lot of great families living out here.” Roskelley said the event is beneficial because it helps residents learn more about law enforcement’s role in the area. “It’s letting everybody know the service is here to help us,” Roskelley said. “They’re here to help keep our homes safe. It’s not us versus them.” He added that the sheriff’s department has been helpful by adding extra patrols in their neighborhood. Auburn Police Chief Valerie Harris said the department will participate alongside the fire department this year. She said a few officers will visit the Palm Terrace neighborhood in Auburn Tuesday night. “We visit with the residents and we let the kids climb through the patrol cars and interact with the officers,” Harris said. She added that events such as National Night Out, and Auburn Family Night in June, help local law enforcement and community members cooperate better. “Law enforcement is there to help but as a community it’s good to know your neighbor,” Harris said. “It’s good to be aware and to support each other.” Roskelley agreed, saying the event is a nice way for the families to meet each other and find out ways to help one another. “We’re promoting everyone else watching out for each other,” Roskelley said. “When we’re out there working together, it makes for a great place to live and a safer environment.” The Journal's Jenifer Gee can be reached at or post a comment.