Family and friends in Keyes joined together on Thursday for a fun-filled evening during the fourth annual Keyes Community Night.
With karate and K-9 unit demonstrations, a barbecue and approximately 80 members of the community, the Keyes Community Night left everyone with a smile on their face and bellies full of food.
“This is a one-stop shop for resources,” said Keyes Municipal Advisory Councilmember Jeff Reid. “We have the school district here, the Police Activities League, the Keyes Fire Department and water district. People leave feeling like they got something out of it.”
The annual event began four years ago after Keyes MAC members tried starting a National Night Out – a nationwide event held every August. With attendance being low, however, MAC members decided they wanted to try something new to bring the community together.
“This is kind of like our National Night Out, but tweaked a little,” said Reid. “We tried having National Night Out, but attendance was always low because it’s during a month when school is out of session and people are gone. We hold this during the school year so that people can come and get a sense of community.”
The first Keyes Community Night was held at the PAL center in Keyes, and then moved to the Keyes Community Service District building to help draw in more people.
“This location has helped a lot with attendance over the years,” said Reid. “There’s a lot of foot and vehicle traffic as it’s one of Keyes’ main streets, so people just stop by when they see what’s going on.”
Harinder Grewal, who serves on the Turlock Unified School District Board of Trustees and the Keyes MAC, said that the event is all about helping the community get to know each other.
“Something like this helps us as a community to get to know each other,” said Grewal. “It’s a really great event and brings everyone together in one place. We always look forward to it.”