POMEROY — While COVID-19 will modify the event, plans are still underway for the annual Shop with a Cop/First Responder event.
Loyalty is Forever and the Meigs County Sheriff’s Office are currently working on plans to provide Christmas joy to area children, while taking necessary safety precautions.
Cheyenne Martin explained that the current plan is to have around 20 families from each of the school districts in the county take part, with the kids to arrive at scheduled times so that their is not a large group at once.
The kids would be dropped off and picked up at Wal-Mart in Mason, rather than at the Meigs County Council on Aging as has been the case in previous years. Arriving at the scheduled time, the child would then shop with a volunteer, picking out their items as usual.
Masks will be required at all times for the first responders and the children, as well as social distancing from other shoppers. A sanitation station will also be set up.
Martin said she has spoken with the manager at Wal-Mart to coordinate a day and time which is best for the shopping to take place.
Since breakfast and a visit with Santa cannot be provided for the kids at the senior center as usual, the current plan is for the children to receive cookies from the Council on Aging to take home, as well as a McDonald’s card to purchase breakfast or lunch. It is possible Santa could be handing out the items to the kids.
One of the main fundraisers each year for the event — the Ugly Sweater Games — will not take place, but numerous fundraisers are taking place, including a raffle at a local doctor’s office, No Shave November at the sheriff’s office, fundraisers at the Pomeroy Police Department, a quilt raffle and visit by the Grinch.
The Grinch will be making an appearance on Saturday, Nov. 21 from noon-2 p.m. at Powell’s Foodfair as part of a Shop with a Cop fundraiser organized by Albert Proffitt. A first responder quilt which is being raffled off as a benefit for the program will also be on display, with ticket available. The quilt drawing will take place in mid-December.
OhioHealth Physician Group Heritage College Primary Care Racine, the office of Douglas Hunter, MD, Morgan Gordon, DO and Nicole Humphrey, CNP, will be raffling off an Ohio State fleece blanket. Tickets can be purchased at the office, 207 5th St., Racine. Contact the office at 740-949-2683 to arrange ticket purchase.
Deputies are accepting sponsorship donations for No Shave November. Contact any deputy to sponsor them in the fundraiser competition.
Officer Leif Babb of the Pomeroy Police Department has been organizing fundraising efforts at the police department to support the program. A Facebook auction will run Nov. 23-29 with items that have been donated for the fundraiser. Donations of items will be accepted until Nov. 22. Current items include a Joe Burrow autographed football, a Nintendo Switch and much more. Items can be view on the “Shop With A Cop Auction by Pomeroy Police Department” Facebook page where the bidding will take place.
Volunteers are also needed to shop with the kids, and possibly assist with transportation of the children to Wal-Mart as busing is not being provided due to the pandemic. Anyone interested in volunteering can contact Cheyenne Martin at the Sheriff’s Office at 740-992-4650 (leave a message).
Anyone who wishes to donate to Shop with a Cop may contact any sheriff’s deputy, the Pomeroy Police Department or make a donation at any Farmer’s Bank location.
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Sarah Hawley is the managing editor of The Daily Sentinel.