The Woodstock Police Department is gearing up for its annual initiative that ensures the city's underprivileged children won't be left behind during the Christmas season.
The department and the Woodstock Police Foundation on Saturday will host the Shop With A Hero Charity Motorcycle Ride.
Registration for the ride starts at 9:30 a.m. and kickstands will go up at 11 a.m. Riders will meet in the parking lot at Walmart Supercenter at 12181 Highway 92 just east of Trickum Road. The route for the ride will be in the vicinity and will circle back to end at Guston's Grille at 12195 Highway 92.
The foundation is asking a charitable donation of $25 per motorcycle be made to the organization, which has 501(c)(3) status.
Woodstock Police Sgt. Shane Collie said he believes the program will serve more children this year. In 2009, about 60 children benefited from the program. That number increased to roughly 87 in 2010 and swelled to about 116 in 2011.
“We seem to grow every year and I think some of it is due to the economy," he added.
After the ride, Collie said he hopes to have a small silent auction and possibly raffle off prizes. He also said the foundation will be selling T-shirts for $15. Collie said he hopes to raise at least $3,500 to fund this year's operations.
Shop With A Hero, a partnership with the police department and the Woodstock Fire Department, allows underprivileged children to shop for presents for themselves or their parents at local stores. Woodstock police have shopped at Walmart for the past few years.
Along with Shop With A Hero, money donated to the foundation helps funds its educational and charitable initiatives such as community oriented partnerships, an explorer post for teenagers interested in a law enforcement career and public safety nonprofit programs.
Collie said he hopes to get as many riders as possible to participate.
"It’s a great cause," he said. "It’s all about the kids and they are the ones who are going to benefit from this.”
For more information, contact Collie at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (770) 592-6030.