Last year's event exceeded organizers' expectations.
"We didn't know what to expect," Providence Township zoning officer Heidi Martinez said last week. "We've had about 50 people come to our annual picnic, so we didn't know how many would come out for the first time we combined that with the National Night Out. We got between 400 and 500 people [in 2018]. We did not think we would get that many."
With that experience behind them, the organizers of this year's National Night Out have refined their program.
"We will be setting up many of the activities inside [the maintenance building] and the food area will be more defined," she said.
The township continues to sponsor the event to build neighborhood camaraderie with first responders, Martinez said.
Local emergency responders will have personnel and equipment at the event. Planning to participate are volunteers from the Rawlinsville, Refton, Quarryville, and Willow Street fire companies, the Keystone Wildfire crew, LEMSA's emergency medical services, Lancaster County's sheriff's department, and state police.
Nearly 20 businesses and organizations will have activities and displays.
"We will have a bounce house brought by Rawlinsville Camp Meeting, DJ Duda will provide music, and we hope to have a smoke house," she said. A smoke house gives children a chance to safely learn how to get out of a building that's on fire.
The Lancaster Barnstormers' mascot, Cylo, will also be on hand.
Free food will include hot dogs donated by Musser's Market, chips from Herr's Snack Foods, and ice cream and drinks from Turkey Hill.
The event will be held at the Providence Township building, 200 Mt. Airy Rd., from 6 to 9 p.m. on Tuesday, August 6. Food and activities will be free. The public is invited to attend.
Providence's National Night Out will be held rain or shine.