With its annual Cops and Kids event just around the corner, the Washington County Sheriff's Office is busily stockpiling items for its upcoming Fraternal Order of Police auction, which will take place Nov. 16 at the Marietta Shrine Club.
"The success of our auction depends on the generous donations from our community," said Sgt. Scott Mankins of the Sheriff's Office.
So far nearly 40 items have been donated, including a year's supply of ice cream, a certificate for a zip lining adventure, a Middleton doll and autographed sports memorabilia from the Cleveland Cavaliers, the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Cincinnati Bengals.
JASMINE ROGERS The Marietta Times
Sgt. Scott Mankins of the Washington County Sheriff’s Office checks out the Ohio State University-themed stoplight painted by students at the Washington County Career Center to be auctioned off at the Fraternal Order of Police auction. The auction will help raise money for the annual Cops and Kids Christmas shopping event.
Also up for grabs this year is a working stoplight that was carefully designed and painted in Ohio State University colors by students at the Washington County Career Center.
Auto collision instructor Gary Ruble said his students had a lot of fun deciding how to paint the stop light and executing the project.
"It just an honor to be able to work on something that benefits the community," said Ruble.
If you go
What: Annual Fraternal Order of Police Auction.
When: Nov. 16 at the Marietta Shrine Club; Silent auction begins at 6 p.m.; Live auction begins at 7 p.m.
Cost: Tickets are $15 and include dinner catered by Cowboy Concessions. Tickets can be purchased in advance by calling the Sheriff's Office at 376-7070.
Benefits: Helps fund the annual Cops and Kids event, which helps underprivileged children get gifts for Christmas.
Donations are still welcome; contact the Sheriff's Office to donate.
The stoplight will also be re-wired by construction instructor Ken Gebhart so it can be plugged into a typical outlet.
Mankins said he is hopeful the OSU-themed stoplight will generate a lot of interest at the auction.
The sheriff's office is still looking for donations to add to the auction block, he said. Though local businesses donate many items, individuals are always welcome to do so as well.
"Not only do we need items, but we need people to show up and bid on the items," Mankins said.
The auction, which takes place at the Marietta Shrine Club, is the office's only fundraiser for the annual Cops and Kids event, which will happen later in December.
For that event, the sheriff's office looks for disadvantaged children that might not have much of a Christmas, and they take them shopping at K-Mart with uniformed officers.
"We usually take 20 to 25 kids. This may be a case where they had a health issue in the family, or it could be that dad has lost his job. We try to look for that group that maybe does not get the help normally," said Lt. Mark Johnson of the Sheriff's Office.
While shopping, the officers make sure first that they purchase warm, winter clothing, and then help the children pick out a gift for a loved one and something special for themselves, added Johnson.
The event is also a good chance for children to see officers as positive role models, and not just someone making an arrest or writing a ticket, said Mankins.
The silent auction begins Nov. 16 at 6 p.m. at the Marietta Shrine Club. There is a $15 admission fee for the auction, which includes a dinner catered by Whipple-based Cowboy Concessions.
Anyone who would like to donate an item for the upcoming auction or purchase a ticket can contact the Sheriff's Office at 376-7070.