Neighborhoods across the metro host ‘National Night Out’ events

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Every first Tuesday in August, neighbors across the metro trade their air-conditioned homes for local parks, driveways, and streets for National Night Out events.

“There’s so much division between political persuasions and environmental issues, so my thought is we want to be with each other not against each other,” said Katrine Stuart, who lives in Nob Hill. “I think in our time it’s harder to meet neighbors.”

More than 100 city staffers dispersed throughout Albuquerque Tuesday night to have a presence at every event, along with law enforcement.

“When we’re interacting with people on 911 calls sometimes it can be really tense or high pressure. This just gives us the opportunity to get to know the community that we serve,” said AFR Fire Chief Emily Jaramillo. “Having that connection and fostering that connection is very important.”

Because with new friendships, also come discussions about neighborhood concerns.

“We’re always concerned about how development proceeds in our neighborhood,” said Charles Thompson, who lives on the west side.

“Crime, homelessness, we didn’t use to see it as much on this part of town, and we’re starting to see it more,” said Jovonne Roybal, who also lives on the west side.

“You hear about homelessness, and you also hear about crime. But this is a very local event, so you always hear about the closest park, the closest road, the closest stop sign and that’s really cool too,” said Mayor Tim Keller. “I’ll come away from tonight with a list of several dozen to-do items for every department in the city.”

For a list of all the city’s neighborhood associations, click here.