Cool time on a hot National Night Out

Shingle Creek neighbors met with Officer Bartholomew and his canine partner Dino on National Night Out.

Written by Ann Lazor

It was August 2, and this was the 8th time our block has participated in National Night Out (NNO) in the Shingle Creek Neighborhood. NNO was founded in 1984 and set for the first Tuesday in August. Minneapolis leads the nation for the highest participation in National Night Out events! It is a time to build relationships that keep neighbors safe—a night to bring back a sense of community to neighborhoods across the country. This particular night was one of the hottest this summer with a heat index of 100 degrees. But even with the excessive heat warning our block still felt it important to come out and connect with our neighbors. 

This year we had the privilege of meeting 4th Police Precinct Officer Brandon Bartholomew and his K-9 unit partner Dino. Every year as the block club leader I make a point to invite a staff member from the police department to visit our block. Officer Bartholomew was very friendly and told us that Dino (a German Shepard) was only 14 months old and is already working in the field — although he is still in training.

He let us know that being an officer in the K-9 unit was always his dream job as a young boy and now he is fulfilling that dream. Although it is his dream job Bartholomew also let us know how difficult it has been for the police force in past few years due to past civil unrest and loss of officers — even the past week four officers had left their positions. He also pointed out that over his years as an officer he’s noticed that blocks that participate in NNO events have less crime and safer neighborhoods. We appreciated knowing this and realized that not only are these events fun but are keeping our community safer.

Carleen, one of the neighbors, noticed that Dino seemed thirsty and asked permission to give Dino a drink of water. Dino appreciated the kind gesture on this scorching hot evening. It was great to see this interaction between a police officer, his dog and a neighbor. The officer even participated in pulling the names for our annual NNO drawing. But duty was also calling — he received a radio call for his services in a Southside neighborhood who needed an officer with a K-9 unit dog. It was great the amount of time he spent with us but he needed to get back to work.

If your block has never participated in a NNO event I highly recommend it. It is very easy to sign up. Just go to and click on National Night Out and fill out an application. Safer blocks lead to safer cities. Who knows, maybe next year you might meet officer Brandon Bartholomew and his partner Dino. To both of them we say, “Thanks for continuing to go out day after day in your job to keep our city safe. We appreciate your hard work and doing your small part to helping heal the relationships between our police force and the citizens of Minneapolis.”