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SLIDESHOW: National Night Out at Waterbury Park and Laurelwood Gardens apartments

Aug. 2 was National Night Out, an event aimed at bringing communities together. In Federal Way, 17 neighborhoods participated by having barbecues, potlucks and games. Shown in this photo slideshow are the events at Waterbury Park Apartments, 32905 19th Pl. S., and Laurelwood Gardens Apartments, 29509 21st Ave. S.

At Waterbury, McGruff the Crime Dog made a brief appearance. That event, organized by Betty Taylor, had gifts and food available to all who came by.

At Laurelwood Gardens, a raffle was held for two computers and various gift cards. South King Fire and Rescue also made an appearance, which definitely appeared to be the highlight for many of the children. People from all backgrounds came together at Laurelwood Gardens to enjoy one another's company and some good food.

According to the city and Federal Way police, National Night Out is intended to help:

• Heighten crime and drug prevention awareness

• Generate support for, and participation in, local anti-crime programs

• Strengthen neighborhood spirit and police-community partnerships

• Send a message to criminals letting them know that neighborhoods are organized and fighting back

In 2010, 15,000 communities across North America and the world participated, with over 37 million people participating. National Night Out parties are mostly organized around block parties, barbecues or similar social gatherings, according to the city. Neighborhood block watch groups and homeowners associations are encouraged to organize events.

For more information on National Night Out, visit www.nationalnightout.org.

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