SCIO TWP. — Washtenaw County Sheriff’s deputies donated their Wednesday evening to help a group of local children buy Christmas gifts for their families at Meijer on Jackson Road in Scio Township.
The annual "Shop with a Cop" event involved 42 officers, 24 community volunteers and 53 children selected from schools in Manchester, Chelsea, Dexter, Saline and Northfield.
But it was not just a day for shopping. The children made Christmas cards and decorations, had their faces painted, were entertained by Colors the Clown, met Santa, ate pizza, met local leaders and spent some quality time with police officers.
Each child was given $100 to shop, according to Sgt. Keith Flores, who organized this year’s event. He said in addition to the officers, there were non-uniform volunteers from the University of Michigan, Chelsea Police Department, family members, Explorers and Citizen’s Police Academy members lending a hand.
Groups of shoppers ran through the store, although the toy section was the most popular. Children eagerly sought gifts for their siblings and parents, assisted by the officers who made sure the purchases stayed within budget.
Before shopping, Colors the Clown performed magic tricks, juggled, made balloon animals, and painted faces, while Santa listened to Christmas wishes and posed for photos.
Volunteers helped the children wrap their gifts while enjoying pizza and snacks donated by Dominos Pizza and Meijer.