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With National Night Out postponed, group hosts activities for people of all ages

PMG FILE PHOTO: BRITTANY ALLEN - Sandy Backs the Blue invites all to flag wave from 6-8 p.m. Aug. 4. Driving down Highway 26 the last few Monday evenings, you've likely seen a display of American flags. This weekly flag wave, as organizer Dixie Bailey is calling it, is an effort by Sandy Backs the Blue, a group organized to show support for local law enforcement.

From 6-8 p.m. today, Aug. 4, the group plans to host a special flag wave to honor the evening that would have been National Night Out.

"Because of mandates, we can't have a gathering (for National Night Out)," Bailey explained.

So, instead, Sandy Backs the Blue is encouraging everyone to come out and wave a flag along Highway 26 near Mt. Hood Cigar Co.

"Right now, the police department needs all the love and encouragement they can get," Bailey said. "They're getting a lot of mixed messages right now — not necessarily our law enforcement — but in other places."

There will also be a coloring contest going on through Saturday, Aug. 22. Children interested in participating are asked to print out a coloring sheet from the National Night Out website and turn it in at one of four local locations to be considered for a prize.

Those locations include Mt. Hood Cigar Co., 37333 Highway 26, Sandy; Geren's Farm Supply, 33680 S.E. Kelso Road, Boring; the Sandy Police Station, 39850 Pleasant St., Sandy; or Rapid Fire Arms, 39110 Proctor Blvd., Sandy.

Votes will be garnered via social media and the winner will be announced by Aug. 31.

Those interested in showing support from home can also do so by placing a blue bulb in their porch light for the evening.

Bailey added that the flag wave is meant to be "non-political," but that anyone can bring any flag they desire. In recent flag waves, people have flown the American flag, Trump flags and Proud Boys flags, but Bailey says flags celebrating other causes and political candidates are welcome. She said she also invited the Sandy STAND UP Movement leadership to attend. STAND UP leaders have made attending the flag wave a decision for their individual members given current public health concerns.

"It's about community unity, and we want the Sandy Police Department to see that we have that here," Bailey said.

The police department hopes to have an actual event for National Night Out at a later date yet to be determined.

For more information about tonight's event, visit the Facebook page.

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