The arrival of July means it's time to look ahead to August. Police agencies around the area are urging neighborhoods to plan now for block parties and other gatherings for the 31st annual National Night Out anti-crime event on Aug. 5.
The events work on the idea that building ties within a neighborhood and with public safety personnel is a basic step in reducing crime. An estimated 15,000 communities and more than 36 million people in the United States and Canada take part each year.
"We want Albany residents to know each other, look out for each other, and report suspicious activity promptly to the Police Department," writes the police department. "This is the best way to decrease crime and help make Albany safer for everyone."
An online registration form is available at bit.ly/1vtl66V or contact Karina Tindol at the Albany Police Department, 510-528-5755 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Registration forms, which should be submitted by July 23, are available at www.cityofberkeley.info/Police/Home/News_Room.aspx, or contact Officer Stephanie Polizziani at 510-981-5772 or email@example.com.
"Additionally, this year, neighborhood groups participating in National Night Out can count that participation as one of the two required meetings to qualify for a free trash bin. See www.cityofberkeley.info/trash bin for more information."
Individuals and neighborhoods interested in organizing an event or finding one near them can call 510-724-8950 and ask for Commander Neil Gang.
The schedule in Richmond includes a kickoff party at 5 p.m., performances and activities at 6 p.m. and an end party at 7:45 p.m.
"We are looking for a few good dance groups to kick off our National Night Out celebrations," noted the department's crime prevention unit. "If you're interested email RPDCommunity@richmondpd.net."
To join an event or register one of your own contact Ken White at 510-215-3212.
WEST COUNTY NOTES: Singing greats Joan Baez and Maria Muldaur headline a benefit concert from 5 to 9 p.m. July 6 for Camp Winnarainbow.
The "Sing Out at Sunset!" concert will be at the intimate and attractive setting of Coventry Grove, a residential amphitheater in Kensington and proceeds will go to scholarships to send disadvantaged children to the circus arts summer camp in Laytonville, Calif.
Berkeley's own Wavy Gravy, founder of Camp Winnarainbow, will be master of ceremonies at the concert and a silent auction of unique rock and roll memorabilia will be offered.
General seating tickets include a preconcert dinner catered by Assemble restaurant in Richmond, wine, and the auction.
For tickets or more details visit www.campwinnarainbow.org or call 510-525-4304.
Berkeley is now part of a 35-city collaborative effort "that connects participating cities with significant technical and planning assistance, data tools, flexible funding, and the ability to customize attainment plans that will best suit each community's needs and the well-being of its residents," according to the foundation. Details: www.luminafoundation.org.