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Rhinelander third graders shop with local Police Officers and Firefighters Submitted: 12/10/2016

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RHINELANDER - A group of Rhinelander kids kept some local officers busy as they sped through the aisles at a nearby department store, shopping for the holidays. 

"I'm just happy they get to see law enforcement and [the] fire department in a positive light," said Rhinelander Police Officer Chad Brown.

 "That's all I care about."

Officer Brown started "Shop With a Cop" in Rhinelander eight years ago. 

He wanted to show kids that they always had support, not just when something was going wrong.

"It's amazing to us to interact with people when it's not a time of crisis," said Brown.

Bright and early Saturday morning, 17 kids boarded a bus. 

The kids got a tour of the police department and had breakfast with officers to get energy for a day of holiday shopping. 

"It's fun to be able to joke around and laugh because we don't get that every day," said Brown. 

8- year- old Dariyon Catchings waited for this day, ever since his brother got chosen for "Shop With a Cop" last year.


 "My shop with a cop dream came true," said Catchings.

Catchings dream day on Saturday included smiles, laughter and packed shopping carts.

"To actually get smiles on their faces the entire time we're with them," said Brown. 
"It's amazing for us."

"We get to go shopping and see their eyes light up when they get stuff for their family members," said Rhinelander Police Department Patrol Officer Christie Kondzela.

The kids were able to pick out $100 worth of Christmas gifts for themselves and their families.

"They came in a little afraid, a little apprehensive, but now they know we're humans just like them," said Brown.
 
Kids that were in need during the holiday season and also doing great in school got picked for the "Shop With a Cop" experience by Rhinelander schools. 

If you would like to donate to "Shop With a Cop" you can mail a check to the Rhinelander Police Department 

C/O : Officer Chad Brown at 201 North Brown St, 
Rhinelander, WI 54501. 

Make checks payable to the Rhinelander Professional Police Association. 

Any donations received after December 7, 2016 will be used for the 2017 "Shop With a Cop" program. 

If you have any questions or would like more information contact the Rhinelander Police Department at

 715-365-5300.


Story By: Phylicia Ashley

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