The recent increase in violent crimes in San Antonio highlights the importance of National Night Out, local authorities said.

National Night Out is a series of events involving 38 million people across the United States. It is held every year on the first Tuesday of October. This year, it is Tuesday, October 3, 2017.

Neighbors will gather to discuss how to fight crime in their areas, and just generally get to know each other. The is idea the camaraderie between people makes neighborhood safer. Some events will also include visits with police and law enforcement.

San Antonio Police Chief William McManus said the more people connect with police, the more crime can be prevented.

“What National Night Out means to us is our partnership with the community in fighting crime. And that partnership is so important, wouldn’t be able to do our job without it, “ Chief McManus said.

San Antonio seems to be in a violent cycle. FBI crime statistics show an increase in violent crimes like murder, aggravated assault and rape from 2015 to 2016. While murders are down in 2017, aggravated assaults, rapes and robberies have increased. There has also been a recent uptick in shootings on the east side.

Most of the events start around 6:00 p.m. Tuesday evening.