Softball Game with Police Kicks Off 'Night Out' Campaign

Local civic groups took on members of the Dedham Police Department in a softball game Sunday.

Local civic groups and the came together Sunday to showcase not just their softball skills - of which there were many - but also how neighbors have improved East Dedham in the past few years.

At the forefront of East Dedham and its "renaissance" is a civic group that are rekindling a neighborhood and putting this little corner of Dedham back on the map.

praised the police for their involvement, and civic groups for not only their environmental impact on and Mother Brook, but also their economic impact on local merchants.

"It is really exciting," said McMurtry, "there is a renaissance that has taken place over the past four or five years, all in the interest of a stronger neighborhood and a stronger community."

The started in East Dedham when chairman Dan Hart and 40 other volunteers decided to form an action committee to clean up the Mother Brook about five years ago.

Cushman Tree Service also helped in restoring the river bank by eradicating evasive plant and tree species, and leaving the bank today spacious and healthy and a place which all can enjoy.

And the work in East Dedham continues. Just this weekend, neighbors pulled "six bikes, a couple of car batteries, and some tire rims" out of the river, Hart said.

From there on with help from the community, they shifted their efforts to Condon Park with the addition of a trail that leads to East Dedham Plaza and the coming addition of a new playground this fall.

The game, played without a scorekeeper and just to get people involved, started the three-day National Night Out celebration - a first for Dedham.

"This is really an exciting event just because Dedham has never participated before," said Christine Ryan, vice President of the . "We have a lot of great events going on, a nice mix of fun and education."

aims to bring neighborhoods, community groups and police together.

Dedham Police Chief Michael d’Entremont has encouraged his officers to interact a little bit more and build some important relationships.

"In an unofficial capacity, it's good to engage the police officers with the public," said d’Entremont. "It’s a good thing for everybody, we are all in this together."

D’Entremont said he hopes the Night Out campaign for Dedham is a long-lasting tradition for residents.

"The whole thing has been great with the police officers and different groups working together," said d’Entremont. "We hope to build on it."

McMurtry called the police's involvement a "great gesture" and enjoyed seeing the groups coming together.

"This has a lot of meaning," said McMurtry.


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