Tuesday is National Night Out in Half Moon Bay and in 16,000 other communities across the country. It’s an excuse to get to know your own neighbors better and to meet the men and women who patrol your neighborhood.
The effort is now nearly 40 years old and grew out of neighborhood watch programs. The simple concept, according to organizers, is that knowing your neighbors and surroundings is the best way to build a safer community. As Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison says, “National Night Out triumphs over a culture that isolates us from each other…”
In Half Moon Bay, participating neighborhoods can expect a visit from a San Mateo County Sheriff’s deputy and perhaps representatives of the local fire department. The city even provided grants to cover expenses for folks who set up events in their own blocks.
It’s tempting to say such efforts are more important than ever in a time when many do not trust the people behind the badge, amid calls to “defund the police.” But the truth is there has long been a distance between cops and the rest of us, which is why National Night Out was established decades ago. And a night of handshakes and smiles won’t solve the difficult issues that exist in our communities.
It can’t hurt, though. To find a list of parties on Tuesday, check out this Google map.
A special “Make it Main Street": This Thursday afternoon, the sunset piano returns to its birthplace and the plans are spectacular.
Remember that time Mauro Ffortissimo and a cadre of subversive co-conspirators dragged a piano to the bluffs in contravention of countless state and local ordinances and it became a media sensation? Well, he’s back after taking the pianos to the San Francisco Botanical Gardens and making a film about the whole thing.
There will be lots to see and hear, including a “speakers' space” at Mac Dutra Park and a “piano liberation” event on the 700 block of Main Street that includes a Ffortissimo performance you’ll have to see to believe. It all happens from 3 to 7 p.m. on Thursday. The pianos will be on Main Street through the weekend for scheduled and spontaneous performances. Go to MakeItMainStreetHMB.org to read all about it.
“Native Gardens": The latest Coastal Repertory Theatre production begins its run on Friday. In this comedy, well-intentioned neighbors become enemies over a garden and barbecue. In other words, this could happen to you! Find out how to see for yourself at coastalrep.com.
For the birds: Renowned local birding expert Alvaro Jaramillo speaks virtually in an event organized by the Coastside Land Trust. He’s going to talk about the raptors that can be seen at Wavecrest Open Space, known as the most important hunting ground for the birds on the San Mateo County coast. The event is set for 10 a.m., Saturday. Learn more at coastsidelandtrust.org.
— Clay Lambert