08/05/12 — National Night Out event offers fun and information

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National Night Out event offers fun and information

By John Joyce
Published in News on August 5, 2012 1:50 AM

Herman Park will be filled with music and dancing Tuesday as families come together to enjoy the evening -- and to meet their local law enforcement personnel.

Goldsboro's celebration of the 29th annual National Night Out takes place the first Tuesday in August and is meant to be a celebration of positivity and possibilities, organizers say.

The event is sponsored by the Goldsboro Police Department, and this year, is directed toward the needs of the city's youths.

"The event adapts to the community's needs each year. This year we're focusing on the kids," Goldsboro police Cpl. Marissa Davis said.

Reigning Miss Goldsboro Blair Mozingo will emcee the affair and is likely to perform. Guest speakers and featured acts also will take center stage to share their talents and messages with all who attend.

Terry Jones, a Wayne Country Day School physical education teacher and basketball coach, will be the keynote speaker. Jones, also a local youth minister, hopes his message will to inspire both the youths and adults in the community to work together for a better future.

"None of us alone are going to be the answer or the solution, but we have the responsibility to be a part of it," Jones said.

Jones has been speaking publicly on behalf of the city's youths in recent months. The former public, and now private school, educator said he believes communities have to adapt to a new generation of children whose interests have evolved.

He said that technology, hotter temperatures and more violence in the streets mean children don't stay outside all day long and play sports and do the things other generations did.

"We offer things the kids aren't interested in. We have to be willing to make adjustments in our own minds," Jones said.

But he does not let the youths off the hook, either.

"They, at the same time, have to take responsibilities for their own actions," he said.

Performers at Herman Park will include opening act Samantha Casey and the Bluegrass Jam; the musical group Into You; and Victoria Ruffin.

The group One Direction, of the Free Gospel Church in Snow Hill, will perform an inspirational mime act.

This is a family event and all ages are welcome. The festivities begin at 6 p.m. and are scheduled to conclude after 9 p.m. Admission is free, as will be the hot dogs, pizza and doughnuts.