Officers of the Colfax Police Department treated 28 kids to a Walmart shopping spree on Dec. 11 to buy Christmas presents for their families as part of the Shop with a Cop program.
The community spirit and generosity of Colfax residents helped to make this entire program possible. Over the past few weeks the community has donated more than $6,500 to the police department and all that money has gone towards Saturday’s massive shopping spree.
“This is the first time we’ve ever done something like this, so this year we’re just working everything out through trial and error and hope it all goes well,” Colfax Police Chief Andy Summy said.
Other than Summy, seven different police officers from the department participated in the shopping trip.
“Our department didn’t come up with this ‘Shop with a Cop’ idea ourselves. Lots of departments throughout the country do programs like this, but earlier this year we were all talking amongst ourselves and decided that we should do something for the community during the holidays. ‘Shop with a Cop’ was just the idea that gained the most traction,” Summy said.
All the participants met at 8 a.m. in front of Colfax City Hall, which also doubles as the police department. Then they all loaded into different vehicles and headed out to Newton’s Walmart.
When the group arrived, everyone posed for a photo op to celebrate the inaugural event and to receive a donation of $1,000 from Walmart to add to the kids’ budget. After that all the kids rushed inside, followed by their law enforcement chaperones and a few parents, to start their hour-long shopping spree.
The kids could get anything they wanted. Barbies, craft supplies, baby dolls, dinosaurs and more were all items high up on a few kids’ wish lists. Walmart employees also set up a small snack station stocked with juice, donuts and hot cocoa near the toy area.
After checking out, the kids, their parents and the officers headed back to the police station to wrap the presents so they’d be ready by Christmas morning.
During the wrapping, everyone was then treated to cookies and other treats by the officers.
“Initially the program was to help just kids in need, but then we realized that some people weren’t comfortable participating if that was the premiss. So now we’re just focusing on kids who just need a little more attention and aren’t necessarily in need,” Summy said.
Contact Abby Knipfel at 641-792-4687 ext. 6531 or email@example.com