Created: 08/06/2014 6:51 PM KAALtv.com
By: Jenna Lohse
(ABC 6 News) -- Neighborhoods all over the country are celebrating National Night Out.
It's a celebration aimed at preventing crime and drug activity. In Rochester, the participation has gone up by 5,000 people each year.
More than 60,000 Olmsted County residents are expected to celebrate National Night Out Tuesday. Organizers say it's a lot more than just a celebration. National Night Out is a time where neighborhoods come together for a little fun and in Olmsted County we've hit a record of more than 230 block parties this year.
"It's just little parties scattered all around the neighborhood if you stop in to each one there's always something different,” said Michael LaPlante, President of Eastside Pioneers Neighborhood Association.
It's also a night out against crime. "It's been a busy eight months,” said Darrel Hildebrand, with the Rochester Police Department. He’s been planning for this night all year. "It's just a time to have some fun, but get to know your neighbors and talk a little bit about crime in Rochester, Olmsted County,” he said.
With more than 40% of Olmsted County residents participating in National Night Out, law enforcers say a night like Tuesday shows its neighbors who are the eyes and ears of the community.
"Believe it or not over 95% of the crimes solved is from the public they gave us, the clues that were helped us in making an arrest or solving a crime,” said Hildebrand.
"We care about our neighborhood, we're working together to keep our neighborhood safe,” said LaPlante.
The numbers show just how much residents care, last year the Olmsted County National Night Out was ranked second in the nation for cities our size.
"Have fun, just get out and enjoy it and get to know your neighbors that's all, that's all it's about,” said Hildebrand.
If you have not registered your neighborhood party yet make sure to do. We have a link on our website under featured links. The more parties registered the better chance we have at that national number one ranking.