National Night Out in Arbuckle started as just a little get together for the town’s Honey Grove-area residents, first hosted last year by husband and wife duo Kevin and Melisa Szmurlo.
Since then, the event has expanded to Arbuckle residents outside the confines of the subdivision, and that’s something the Szmurlos are happy about.
“It started off just being for this neighborhood, and we have just made so many friends,” Melisa Smurlo said
This year, the Szmurlos hosted between 30-40 people at the event.
Kevin Szmurlo, who is a sheriff’s deputy in Solano County, got in touch with the Colusa County Sheriff’s Office on Monday and extended an invitation to the department to come out to interact with the Arbuckle community.
“This is great for the community and great for the sheriff’s office,” Melisa Szmurlo said.
“It’s a great way for the sheriff’s office to get involved, with the way things are going now – you know…” Kevin Szmurlo added.
Showing up at National Night Out in Arbuckle was something the CCSO was more than happy to do.
“It’s always beneficial for us to get ourselves out more in the community and to work with the community in everything we do,” Sgt. Michael Bradwell, one of three officers who attended the National Night Out, said.
Kids at the event got the chance to sit in the department’s patrol vehicles – the front seat, of course – and got to learn a little bit more about their local law enforcement agency.
The Szmurlos are hoping to get the Arbuckle Fire Department and more involvement from the community next year – and in every year following it.
“We will have this every year after this as long as we’re living here,” Kevin Szmurlo said.
For those Arbuckle residents in attendance this year, the event was something worth coming back for.
“This was really good. It was fun,” said Don Joel, a pastor at the Arbuckle Community Church. “It’s good to see people in a different context and to meet some new people. I thought Arbuckle was small, but I’m still meeting new people after a year here.”