The Metropolitan Police Department is marking National Night Out with this banner on its headquarters in downtown D.C.
National Night Out kicks off later tonight and law enforcement authorities from around the region will be out walking the streets.
D.C. Police Chief Cathy Lanier says National Night Out is an important way for officers on the beat to meet neighbors face-to-face, hear their concerns, and strengthen the lines of communication -- all considered critical components of effective community policing and crime prevention.
And as Lanier point out, the officers are rewarded for their efforts.
"Typically, you go around to community events, members are cooking for us, feeding us very well and we walk through the neighborhoods with the community organizations," says Lanier.
Cook-outs, block parties, and other fun events are planned.
Residents are also encouraged to leave their front porch lights on this evening.