National Night Out Against Crime
By Nancy Rubin Stuart
Crime is always a hot topic, and when it was combined with the cool weather
of Tuesday, August 6, more than five hundred residents of Turtle Bay turned
out for the 18th Annual National Night Out Against Crime. Hosted
by the 17th Police Precinct Community Council and held at Dag Hammarskjold Plaza,
this year's event was considered one of the most successful ever, according
to many participants.
"The weather helped, but we expected crowds like this because we think
this is a time that people want to connect," said Detective Frank Bogucki,
Community Affairs Officer for the 17th Police Precinct. "Our
job is to make people feel comfortable with the 17th Precinct and understand
that we're dedicated to keeping the residential, business and diplomatic communities
of Turtle Bay safe. It's an important event that brings us all closer."
To highlight that mission, Dag Hammarskjold Plaza was filled with various
NYPD exhibits staffed by members of the 17th Precinct. Among them were tables
for fingerprinting, safety tips, auxiliary police volunteers, medical rescue,
the new police museum and police recruitment unit. At the Plaza's southern edge
a large Police air boat was also on display.
As Turtle Bay residents strolled through the Plaza, they were entertained
by music from Bill Turner & his Blue Smoke Rock & Roll Band, which,
in turn, inspired some residents to dance. "We love this band. This is
the kind of music that appeals to everyone here, to people of all ages,"
said Turtle Bay volunteer, Morris Tarragano.
"It's the music, the weather and the fact that so many people are connecting
that make tonight such a special event," added Bill Huxley, a TBA board
Other tables staffed by representatives from organizations as varied as United
Breast Cancer, Bide-A-Wee, Pfizer and the New York City Department of Parks
and Recreation provided Turtle Bay residents with useful information. For children
there were moon rides, free popcorn, finger- and face-painting tables and balloons.
Adding to the festive air of the night were concession stands providing soft
drinks and a variety of foods and snacks.
The highlight of the evening was the appearance of New York City Mayor Michael
R. Bloomberg. In his talk - the fifth of his appearances around the city that
evening on behalf of the National Night Out Against Crime - Mr. Bloomberg observed
that New York is the "safest big city in the nation." While crime
was down nationally by 6% this past year, Mr. Bloomberg observed that it declined
by 12% in New York City alone, despite the downturn in the economy. He concluded
by praising the 17th Precinct for its dedicated work, emphasizing that its success
was highly dependent upon the cooperative spirit that existed between the Precinct
and the residents of Turtle Bay.
Police Commander Ray Kelly spoke next, reminding Turtle Bay residents that
"You are the eyes and ears of the community" and praised the 17th
Police Precinct Community Council for its fine work improving the quality of
life in Turtle Bay. "Residents must continue to be alert and vigilant,"
Commander Kelley added, and reminded members of the audience to call 1-888-NYC-SAFE
if they see anything troubling or suspicious.
Mayor Bloomberg then presented Jay Litwin, President of the 17th Police Precinct
Community Council, with a plaque officially proclaiming August 6, 2002 as National
Night Out Against Crime.
A stirring rendition of the national anthem was sung by Police Detective David
Arellano, followed by comments from several area leaders. Among those who spoke
were State Senator Liz Krueger of the 26th District, New York State Assemblyman
John Ravitz of the 73rd District, Eva Moscowitz of the city council, District
4, Police Chief Michael Esposito and Jay Litwin.
Home | About
Us | Announcements | History
| Map | Places of Interest
Help Line | Membership
| Links | Yellow Pages
| Advertising | Contact
Turtle Bay Association is a nonprofit (501c3) community
224 East 47th Street, New York City 10017
Fax (212) 751-4941