The county began hosting the event in 2001 to help prevent crime and connect the community by giving citizens and law enforcement agencies the chance to interact.
“National Night Out helps build relationships between citizens and us,” police Officer Cassandra Shannon said.
About 2,000 people attended last year’s event.
The event runs from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. and will take place in front of the Target Department Store in the Henry Town Center complex at 1850 Jonesboro Road.
It is free to the public and will include activities for residents like live music by local musicians Jason Lee and The Cyclones and children’s attractions like face painting, inflatables and wildlife displays.
According to Sgt. Jimmie Spence of the county sheriff’s office, the event will also help educate youngsters about local law enforcement by giving them the opportunity to meet officers and get a first-hand look at some of the equipment and vehicles used to keep citizens safe.
“It’s a great opportunity for kids to ask questions and to understand that we are accessible,” he said.
The law enforcement agencies also noted the event helps newcomers to the county become familiar with their neighborhoods and feel welcomed.
Shannon said, “Henry County is growing every year and [this event] helps build relationships with new citizens.”
The event will host K-9 demonstrations and public safety displays from SWAT team members, which Lt. Rodney Brooks said are some of the favorite activities of residents who have attended in the past.
Local businesses like Truett’s Grill, Home Depot and PetSmart help host the event and will have giveaways and prizes.
“Henry County’s businesses are great partners and really make National Night Out possible,” Spence said.
The police and fire departments agreed the event was created with families in mind.
“National Night Out is a fun way to spend time with your family and to see what the departments have to offer the citizens of Henry County,”said police Officer Sam Cox.
According to a county statement, the first National Night Out took place in 1984 with 2.5 million attendees across the country.
Now in its 30th year, the event involves more than 37 million attendees and 15,000 communities from all 50 states, U.S. territories, Canadian cities and military bases worldwide.
If you go
What: National Night Out
When: Tuesday from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m.
Where: Henry Town Center complex at 1850 Jonesboro Road, McDonough