Lights On for ‘Night Out’

WINNSBORO — Local law enforcement agencies are planning a special celebration to mark the National Night Out event.

The National Night Out is actually Tuesday, Aug. 6, this year, but the Winnsboro Department of Public Safety and the Fairfield County Sheriff’s Office are sponsoring a special event on Saturday, Aug. 3, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Fortune Springs Park in Winnsboro.

The weekend date was chosen, explained PCSO Francine Goins and Sgt. Angie Ingram, because they felt they would get more participation from the community on a weekend than a week night.

“Lighting on a house is the number one deterrent against crime,” explained Sgt. Ingram.

“The National Night Out is an event where law enforcement asks people to turn all their front porch lights during the evening, and we will be asking people on Saturday to turn their porch lights on during that Tuesday, Aug. 6.”

Goins said the National Night Out event encourages a better community by giving neighborhoods a chance to form stronger relationships with each other, and with law enforcement.
To celebrate National Night Out, the WDPS and the Sheriff’s Office have designed an event in the park with the help of several community organizations.

There will be free blood pressure/health screenings provided by Fairfield Memorial Hospital, face painting and a comedy skit provided by the Pine Tree Playhouse, an on-the-half-hour Zumba demonstration by Fairfield County Recreation, and equipment displays by the S.C. Highway Patrol and the S.C. Department of Natural Resources.

Local merchants Victoria’s Gift Boutique and Abba’s Sweet Treats will provide chances on gift certificates and a gift basket.

Hot dogs and burgers will be served, Ingram said, and the event is free and open to the public. Parking will be in and around the Old Armory parking lot. If rain threatens, the event will be moved inside the Armory.

The slogan that visitors to the Night Out event will see on the T-shirts is ‘Bringing Our Communities Together.’

“The National Night Out (this is the fourth year that Fairfield County law enforcement has held such an event) gives all the communities an opportunity to come together and see that even though the Sheriff’s Office and the Department of Public Safety are two separate jurisdictions, we work together for a common goal — the good of our community,” Ingram said.

The event is also an opportunity for law enforcement to distribute crime prevention materials, and just for members of the communities to get to know their local law enforcement officers in a casual and relaxed setting, said Ingram.