National Night Out in Manawa
Police build relationships with community
By Holly Neumann
Residents came to Lindsay Park on Tuesday, Aug. 2, to celebrate National Night out in Manawa.
“Mayor John Smith stopped me in city hall several years ago and said he was at an event in Marion called National Night Out and wondered if we could get one started here,” said Ellen Connor, director of the Sturm Memorial Library, who helps plan the event. “So I took him at his word and this is now our third annual event.”
National Night Out takes place across the country and promotes community, neighborhood camaraderie and law enforcement.
“It is so import for people to get out and see familiar faces in our community,” said Connor, “and to feel safe and secure when you see them later on.”
She noted the significance of having area police officers at the event as well.
“It’s very important that our community can relate to our officers on a personal and fun level,” she said. “It will help build a stronger relationship with all law enforcement down the road.”
Deputy Bill Zeamer, from the Waupaca County Sheriff’s Office, agrees.
“In light of recent events, building relationships is key,” he said. “We are here to help and we can help when you need us.”
Cathy Shockley, of Manawa CARES, hopes the event can bring communities together again.
“We are experiencing a lot of turmoil in our country right now,” she said. “This is a good safe place for people to come and interact and to see our police officers and firemen.”
She said that it is a chance for the community to rally around them and let them know they have their support.
“Hopefully it will lead to more neighborliness and hopefully a stronger community,” she said.