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Turlock neighbors come together for National Night Out
Aspiring artists try out their graffiti skills at Columbia Park on Tuesday. - photo by CANDY PADILLA / The Journal

Turlockers across the city ventured out of their homes Tuesday night and into the streets and parks as part of the National Night Out event.

National Night Out is a movement designed to heighten crime and drug prevention awareness, generate support for local anticrime efforts, strengthen neighborhood spirit and police-community partnerships.

The Turlock Police Department had 38 neighborhoods registered for the event, which granted them a visit from officials from either the police or fire department, city representatives, McGruff the Crime Dog and Blue Santa.

Rebecca Bettencourt of the El Capitan Block Party has participated for the last six years after seeing a sign advertised by the police department.

"I saw the sign and decided to be a part of it being I have children and it is a good way to get to know your neighbors and the community," she said. The block party had about 30 neighbors attend on Tuesday and Bettencourt said she and her neighbors plan to continue the tradition in the following years.