Though Muscatine police officers could not hold their iconic rooftop stakeout due to heavy rains, they still turned out in force at Dunkin’ Donuts to benefit Special Olympics Iowa on Friday, September 7th, from 6:00 am until 11:00 am.
For the fourth year in a row, officers from the Muscatine Police Department, along with officers from twenty-two other departments across the state, covered Dunkin’ Donuts to heighten awareness and raise money for the Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics Iowa. The event has raised a total of more than $55,000 for the previous three years.
In return for the police officers “doing time” at their restaurants, Dunkin’ Donuts donated $2,000 to the organization. In addition, each guest who visited and made a donation received a free medium hot or iced coffee coupon.
“The Law Enforcement Torch run has been an incredible inspiration to our Special Olympics athletes,” said John Kliegl, President and CEO of Special Olympics Iowa. “Law enforcement have made a huge impact on our athletes. We are excited to partner with Dunkin’ Donuts once again to help funds and awareness.”
The Law Enforcement Torch Run represents the largest grassroots fundraising program and public awareness vehicle for Special Olympics. Law enforcement officers from all fifty states, twelve Canadian provinces and territories, and forty-four other countries carry the Flame of Hope in honor of Special Olympics athletes. In 2017, the Iowa Law Enforcement Torch Run worked with 1,000 law enforcement officers to raise more than $900,000 for Special Olympics Iowa athletes.
Special Olympics Iowa provides year-round training and competition opportunities through twenty-three different Olympic-type sports for more than 14,000 individuals with intellectual disabilities and unified partners. The organization holds more than ninety competitions statewide, including state tournaments each year.
Most importantly, the Muscatine Police Department’s Cop on a Rooftop event helped to support Muscatine’s very own Special Olympics program. Lieutenant Jeff Jirak said, “police work isn’t always about crime. It’s really about building relationships with people and building trust.” The Muscatine Police Department has a long history of working with Muscatine’s Special Olympics by challenging their basketball team to a game each winter.
Though the weather may have put a “damper” on this year’s Cop on a Rooftop event, the Muscatine Police Department persevered and found ways to make their annual Special Olympics fundraiser a success. Through their efforts to raise money for the Law and Enforcement Torch Run and ongoing engagement with Muscatine’s Special Olympics, the department proved once again the depth of their commitment to the Muscatine community, and their willingness to support a good cause any way possible.