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National Night Out is Tuesday for everyone

Find the NNO event in your community

National Night Out began nearly 40 years ago with the idea that the best way to build a safer community is to know your neighbors and your surroundings. A network of neighborhood watch groups and other crime prevention efforts along with law enforcement agencies threw block parties, cookouts, festivals and other events to bring people together with public safety officials, in their own neighborhoods or the larger community.

It just keeps growing, reaching “millions of neighbors across thousands of communities,” according to the organization’s website at natw.org.

The Cloquet Police Department started a communitywide gathering several years ago that drew large crowds to the park. Within a couple years, Cloquet Police Chief Derek Randall said they realized the magnitude of the event and the resources it required were more than the CPD and its budget could bear.

“Therefore, last year, we returned to the original idea of National Night Out, where officers joined our citizens at their events throughout Cloquet, Scanlon, and Fond du Lac,” he said.

This year a community group formed to relaunch the large event at Veterans Park.

One of the group’s leaders, Dawn Zeleznikar, is also an Eagles Club member. She said turnout at a solo Eagles event was not great the past two years.

“We thought it was important to try to get the whole community involved, and bring people together with law enforcement,” she said.

They are planning to serve around 1,000 people, with costs covered by donations from local businesses and organizations, including the Eagles Club, which is buying the drinks. There will be bouncies, police and firefighters (and their vehicles), businesses with giveaways, raffles and lots of friends and neighbors.

“Quite a few businesses have chipped in, and others will have things like root beer floats at the park,” she said. “I’m hoping to have some fun races too.”

Randall said Cloquet will have officers at Veterans Park and other block parties and cookouts.

He encouraged everyone to participate in a National Night Out event, wherever it is.

“We can work together to create an inclusive and secure environment for everyone in our community,” he said. “Our encouragement is extended to all to reach out to your neighbors, civic groups, and local organizations to celebrate this occasion and contribute to the strength and unity of our neighborhood.”

Here are details on some Carlton County National Night Out events set for Tuesday, Aug. 1.

Cloquet / Scanlon

Cloquet will have its first large National Night Out event since 2019, from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday at Veterans Park.

-The Cloquet and Fond du Lac police departments, Carlton County Sheriff’s Office and the Cloquet Area Fire District will be there, with activities, food, community information and lots of opportunities for getting to know one another.

• Also in Cloquet, Zion Lutheran Church will provide hamburgers, hot dogs, watermelon and root beer floats 5:30-7:30 p.m. on the front lawn at 1000 Washington Avenue, along with games, conversation and live music.

• Scanlon will celebrate 3-6 p.m. at the Scanlon Community Center, 2801 Dewey Ave. with hot dogs, pulled pork sandwiches, kettle corn and visits with police, fire and military, courtesy of many different donations.


Head to the Esko fire station 5:30-7 p.m. Tuesday for a bubble show along with a free hot dog dinner and a chance to look at all the safety vehicles.


The city of Wrenshall will hold its NNO event 5-7 p.m. Tuesday at Hugh D. Line park. Join neighbors for this free, family-friendly event with hot dogs, freezies and chips provided.

Kettle River

The fun begins with a supper of hamburgers and hot dogs at 5 p.m. at the Kettle River Senior Center. Kids activities and lots of people to meet.


Things get cooking 5:30-7 p.m. Tuesday in the Carlton DNR Park across from the firehall, with free food, live music, a bouncy house, temporary tattoos, emergency vehicles and a theater performance. If the weather is bad, the event will move to Four Seasons Sports Complex.


People will gather at the Barnum City Park 6-8 p.m. Tuesday. Guests include the Barnum and Blackhoof fire departments, Mounted Posse, Carlton County Sheriff’s Office, Barnum Early Childhood, Little B’s and more.