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177th Fighter Wing Shows Community Outreach at Hamilton Township's National Night Out

Air Force Tech. Sgt. Keith M. Curtis, a member of the 177th Fighter Wing’s Security Forces Squadron, helps a community member don a security forces helmet during Hamilton Township’s National Night Out at the Hamilton Mall in Mays Landing, New Jersey, on Aug. 1, 2017.

Air Force Tech. Sgt. Keith M. Curtis, a member of the 177th Fighter Wing’s Security Forces Squadron, helps a community member don a security forces helmet during Hamilton Township’s National Night Out at the Hamilton Mall in Mays Landing, New Jersey, on Aug. 1, 2017. Community members were provided access to the various types of safety equipment used by security forces members. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Airman 1st Class Cristina J. Allen/Released)

Staff Sgt. Richard A. Elliot, a member of the 177th Fighter Wing’s Security Forces Squadron, shows a community member how to use security forces equipment during Hamilton Township’s National Night Out at the Hamilton Mall in Mays Landing, New Jersey, on Aug. 1, 2017.

Staff Sgt. Richard A. Elliot, a member of the 177th Fighter Wing’s Security Forces Squadron, shows a community member how to use security forces equipment during Hamilton Township’s National Night Out at the Hamilton Mall in Mays Landing, New Jersey, on Aug. 1, 2017. Elliot shows community members how to safely handle security forces weapons. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Airman 1st Class Cristina J. Allen/Released)

Air Force Staff Sgt. John D. Lundy, a member of the 177th Fighter Wing’s Security Forces Squadron, fist bumps with a community members during Hamilton Township’s National Night Out at the Hamilton Mall in Mays Landing, New Jersey, on Aug. 1, 2017.

Air Force Staff Sgt. John D. Lundy, a member of the 177th Fighter Wing’s Security Forces Squadron, fist bumps with a community members during Hamilton Township’s National Night Out at the Hamilton Mall in Mays Landing, New Jersey, on Aug. 1, 2017. Lundy helps young community members in and out of a M10784 Light Medium Tactical Vehicle utility truck. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Airman 1st Class Cristina J. Allen/Released)

Air Force Senior Airman Zachary D. Ferguson, a member of the 177th Fighter Wing’s Security Forces Squadron, shows a community member how to use security forces equipment during Hamilton Township’s National Night Out at the Hamilton Mall in Mays Landing, New Jersey, on Aug. 1, 2017.

Air Force Senior Airman Zachary D. Ferguson, a member of the 177th Fighter Wing’s Security Forces Squadron, shows a community member how to use security forces equipment during Hamilton Township’s National Night Out at the Hamilton Mall in Mays Landing, New Jersey, on Aug. 1, 2017. Ferguson shows community members how to safely handle security forces weapons. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Airman 1st Class Cristina J. Allen/Released)

Air Force Senior Airman Kelly A. Grau, a member of the 177th Fighter Wing’s Security Forces Squadron, poses for a photo with a community member during Hamilton Township’s National Night Out at the Hamilton Mall in Mays Landing, New Jersey, on Aug. 1, 2017.

Air Force Senior Airman Kelly A. Grau, a member of the 177th Fighter Wing’s Security Forces Squadron, poses for a photo with a community member during Hamilton Township’s National Night Out at the Hamilton Mall in Mays Landing, New Jersey, on Aug. 1, 2017. Grau shows community members how to safely handle a .50-caliber Browning machine gun on the Humvee. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Airman 1st Class Cristina J. Allen/Released)

Air Force Tech. Sgt. Jonathan D. Kane, a 177th Fighter Wing Honor Guard Member, displays the colors during Hamilton Township’s National Night Out at the Hamilton Mall in Mays Landing, New Jersey, on Aug. 1, 2017.

Air Force Tech. Sgt. Jonathan D. Kane, a 177th Fighter Wing Honor Guard Member, displays the colors during Hamilton Township’s National Night Out at the Hamilton Mall in Mays Landing, New Jersey, on Aug. 1, 2017. The 177th FW Honor Guard posted the colors during the National Anthem at the opening ceremony to show the 177th FW’s support to the community. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Airman 1st Class Cristina J. Allen/Released)

Atlantic City Air National Guard Base, N.J. -- Members of the 177th Fighter Wing participated in Hamilton Township’s National Night at the Hamilton Mall in Mays Landing, N.J., Aug. 1, 2017.

National Night Out is a community-building campaign that helps to enhance the relationship between neighborhood residents with local law enforcement and other important assets in the area.

“The main idea is to bring police, fire, military, and other partners together with the community,” said Crystal Rodriguez, marketing manager for Hamilton Township's National Night Out. “It’s about making a great night out to build a stronger community.”

The 177th FW Security Forces Squadron interacted with community members and set up a display that provided access to various military equipment and vehicles. Community members were able to climb into a Humvee, M1078 Light Medium Tactical Vehicle utility truck, and an all-terrain vehicle. Additionally, attendees were educated on the safe handling of various types of security forces equipment.

“It’s a great event that exposes us to the community,” said Master Sgt. Michelle Connelly, interim superintendent of the 177th SFS. “It gets our name out in the community and provides us with positive interaction with community members.”

Hamilton Township's National Night Out consisted of many other demonstrations and exhibits. Some of these included helicopter landings by New Jersey Forest Fire and Mid-Atlantic Medivac, along with a K-9 demonstration, equipment displays from police, fire, and EMS and many other family-friendly activities. The 177th FW Honor Guard also attended the event to display the colors during the National Anthem.

“I think it’s a positive situation and it’s great for the community,” said Nikki Pecou, Hamilton Township resident. “My daughter definitely enjoys the displays.”

National Night Out is held on the first Tuesday in August in thousands of communities across the U.S., U.S. territories, and military bases worldwide. The event gathers neighbors and community partners together to enhance relationships and to help build a true sense of community.

“The 177th Fighter Wing is a great partner to help make a successful National Night Out,” said John Kurtz, Mayor of Hamilton Township, Atlantic County, New Jersey. “We appreciate everything the 177th Fighter Wing does.”