All of the heroes come to Walmart with lights and sirens blazing in a parade of police cars, fire trucks, and ambulances to greet all of the children and elves.

Holiday With a Hero is a success

The Lassen Community College baseball team works as Santa’s elves by helping heroes and kids with their shopping and playing Twister with kids who are waiting to go shopping.

The annual Shop with a Cop Christmas shopping event took place on Saturday Dec. 17.

The event has in past years, only included local law enforcement officers that go shopping with children for Christmas.

This year, the Susanville Police Officers Association expanded the program to include the county’s firemen, military personnel and paramedics.

The event is now known as Holiday with a Hero since all of the local heroes are now participating to help provide magical Christmas’ for local children.

The event started with a parade of fire engines, police cars and ambulances coming in with sirens and lights blaring. After the heroes arrived, Santa Claus flew in on a SEMSA helicopter to greet the heroes and children and wish them all a very Merry Christmas.

Every child had a Christmas list that included items that they both wanted and needed. The kids got to go around Walmart with their hero and one of Santa’s elves to get all of the items on their list.

Holiday with a Hero has provided for a wonderful Christmas for 119 local kids this year. The kids not only got to go shopping with a hero, but they also got to eat a yummy breakfast of pancakes and eggs, meet Santa, play games, decorate Christmas cookies and get their faces painted.

The many extra activities that the kids got to participate in allowed them to have fun and stay busy while the heroes were shopping. There were 76 heroes involved, and many of them got to go shopping twice, so the volunteers made the waiting fun for the children who went later.

The event wouldn’t have been possible without the hundred volunteers that worked at the games and activities or as Santa’s elves helping with the shopping.

“Shop with a Cop is my favorite thing all year!” says first grader Kate Sherman. For the kids who participate who are a little bit older, the experience is one that they will remember for the rest of their lives.

The Lassen High School ASB raised money to make stockings for every child who participated in Holiday with a Hero so that they not only got to go shopping for Christmas presents, but they also will get the fun of going through the goodies packed in a stocking.

Not only does Holiday with a Hero allow many children to experience the joy of Christmas; it also builds a good relationship between the youth of the community and the first responders.

This years Holiday with a Hero was the biggest one yet, and everyone involved hopes that they will be able to reach even more families next year.