Night to Unite

2021 Night to Unite - Tuesday, August 3rd

Annually, on the first Tuesday in August, neighborhoods across the nation celebrate, get to know one another, and help keep their community crime-free with Night to Unite parties. You get to decide how to celebrate. Some neighborhoods have:

  • BarbecuesNTU Logo
  • Ice cream socials
  • Kids' games
  • Music
  • Pizza parties
  • Potlucks
  • Or simply sit on the front porch and visit with one another

Members of the Cottage Grove Police and Fire Departments (including McGruff the Crime Dog and Sparky the Fire Dog!), elected officials, and city staff visit many gatherings as part of this crime prevention event. The event is sponsored by the Cottage Grove Department of Public Safety, the Cottage Grove Public Safety Board, and the Minnesota Crime Prevention Association (MCPA).

Night to Unite is designed to: heighten crime and drug prevention awareness; generate support for and participation in anti-crime efforts; strengthen neighborhood spirit and public safety-community partnerships; and send a message to criminals letting them know neighborhoods are committed to remaining organized and staying safe.

Get Involved

The deadline to register your neighborhood party with the City was Friday, July 9; we are no longer accepting requests for street closures and/or visits from police officers, firefighters, elected officials, and other city staff. If you are still interested in hosting a Night to Unite neighborhood event we encourage you to do so using the tips and ideas below.

Here are some tips and ideas to help you have a successful Night to Unite party:


Please contact the Cottage Grove Department of Public Safety at 651-458-2850 if you have additional questions on Night to Unite.

Backpack & Paper Products Campaigns

Participation in these campaigns is optional; the department of Public Safety will be in contact with registered party hosts regarding campaign details.

Fill the Backpack Campaign

We are also encouraging participation in the Fill the Backpack campaign. The idea behind this campaign is to provide needed school supplies to our area children. The Cottage Grove Public Safety Board will donate a school backpack to each Night to Unite block party that chooses to participate in this campaign. You are all encouraged to bring school supplies to fill the backpack. Backpacks will be picked up the following morning and donated to the Friends in Need food shelf. The school supplies will then be distributed to local families in need.

Paper Product Donations

An important part of our Night to Unite celebration involves giving back to our community. In addition to our ever popular Backpack Campaign we are encouraging citizens to donate paper products which will be donated to the Friends in Need food shelf (FIN). Paper products can include such things as: toilet paper, paper towels, napkins, diapers, etc. FIN is always in need of items like this and this donation will be much appreciated. We will pick up the donations from your doorstep the morning after your Night to Unite party and we'll deliver them to the Friends in Need food shelf.


Night to Unite 2020 was cancelled due to the Coronavirus pandemic. Precautions should still be considered when planning Night to Unite celebrations this year; please refer to the Minnesota Department of Health and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention websites for recommendations.