PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — National Night Out will take place Tuesday, Aug. 1. This annual event serves as a community builder for people to get to know their neighbors. It also works to build police and community relationships.

Portsmouth looks to continue the tradition they’ve done for decades.

“It gives us an opportunity to continue to engage with our citizens,” Portsmouth Police Chief Stephen Jenkins said.

National Night Out takes place across the nation on the first Tuesday in August. Jenkins said he looks forward to meaningful dialogue, and the opportunity to send a message.

“We are saying, ‘We are tired of crime,'” Jenkins said. “We are tired of it plaguing our community. We as a community plan, and intend, to do everything to stamp it out.”

The event will have several different activities including dunk tanks and live music from 2nd Wynd.

“You are going to see a car show,” Jenkins said. “You are going to see a little bit of everything.”

Jenkins said he hopes people walk away with a positive message.

“Portsmouth as a city is trying, and we are improving,” Jenkins said. “Don’t believe the hype. Portsmouth is a wonderful community.”

Jenkins said he hopes that Portsmouth will land the top spot as the best National Night Out in the nation. Last year, they fell short, but are confident this is the year. He said people will have to come out to see for themselves.

Photo of National Night Out 2023 event map (Courtesy: Portsmouth Police Department)

Another thing to know this year is the venue change. Last year, more than 4,500 people showed up, so it’s been moved Downtown Portsmouth to better accommodate the crowds.

The fun will be at Festival Park by the Atlantic Union Bank Pavilion.