BROKEN BOW—The 14th annual Santa Cop Lunch is scheduled for this Sunday, November 8 from 12 to 2 p.m. at St. Joseph’s Parish Center (1407 South E Street (west Highway 2) in Broken Bow). Funds raised from the free-will offering lunch go to provide holiday gifts to Custer County kids in need.
As with many events in 2020 due to COVID-19, this year’s Santa Cop Lunch will be held in “to go” fashion. The public is invited to pick up homemade jambalaya, chicken noodle, or chili with crackers and a cookie provided in to-go containers.
In a past interview with KCNI/KBBN, members of the Custer County Chapter of the Salvation Army Julie Toline and Carol Allen said applications are sent to local families, the Salvation Army purchases and wraps Christmas gifts, and then law enforcement deliver the gifts.
“With the money we receive we purchase gifts and then the law enforcement delivers them,” Julie Toline told KCNI/KBBN. Carol Allen added that the program is a good way to increase positive connections between law enforcement and kids in the community.
The Nebraska State Patrol helped launch the Santa Cop program in 2004. In years past, Custer County has raised thousands of dollars through the soup luncheon to help local families celebrate the holiday season.
Allen and Toline appreciate all of the organizations, businesses, and members of the public who support the lunch fundraiser. The Knights of Columbus put on the lunch with the help of Grocery Kart, the Salvation Army, Broken Bow Police Department, Custer County Sheriff’s Office, and the Nebraska State Patrol.
Allen and Toline said–on average–155 kids receive gifts each year and this year they hope to serve as many families in need as they can.
If you are unable to attend but would like to make a donation, please make checks payable to “Santa Cop” and mail them to Julie Toline at 116 S. 11th Ave, Broken Bow, NE 68822.