Mesquite Police Department officer Tracy Fails, right, spends time with one of the kids participating in the annual Shop with a Cop, sponsored by the MPD. Photo submitted.

It’s hard to tell the difference between the kids and cops when all of them are swarming the local WalMart giggling, oohing and aahing up and down the aisles. It always happens each year during the annual Shop with a Cop sponsored by the Mesquite Police Department.

The police department collects money from many different sources all year long. And then in a single day police officers pick kids up from school in their official vehicles, go on a shopping spree and have lunch afterwards at the Elks Lodge.

It’s hard to tell who’s having more fun during the annual Shop with a Cop, Mesquite Police Department Chief Troy Tanner or a young boy who got to have a shopping spree thanks to generous donors in the Mesquite area. Photo submitted.

The kids get to pick their own toys, clothing, and gifts for their families. The cops get to spend time with the kids and remember the real reason for the season.

“In all the years we’ve been doing this annual event, we always enjoy the kids,” Mesquite Police Chief Troy Tanner said. “It reminds all of us that Christmas is about giving and about the kids. We appreciate the tremendous community support we get for this event. Without the citizens’ help, we could never do it.”