KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — Police officers from across East Tennessee are serving in a different way to raise money for the Special Olympics.

On Tuesday, Oct. 10 from 5 to 8 p.m., officers will be waiting tables at participating Texas Roadhouse locations as a part of a “Tip-A-Cop” campaign, with all proceeds going to support the tips being donated to the Special Olympics, according to the Tennessee Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics.

“Join members of local law enforcement agencies as they give new meaning to “protect and serve” at this Tip-A-Cop fundraiser. Stop in, enjoy dinner, give a donation, and help support the athletes of Special Olympics Tennessee.” Tennessee Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics wrote in their Facebook event description.

The Sevierville Police Department shared on Thursday that they would be taking part in the fundraiser at the Sevierville location, on Collier Drive in Governor’s Crossing.

“We hope you can stop in for dinner and help us help Special Olympics!” Sevierville Police Department said.

Participating locations across the state include:

  • Johnson City
  • Kingsport
  • Morristown
  • Alcoa
  • Sevierville
  • Pigeon Forge
  • Knoxville – Turkey Creek
  • Knoxville – Powell
  • Knoxville – Morrell Rd
  • Knoxville – Kinzell Way
  • Chattanooga
  • Hixson
  • Hendersonville
  • Spring Hill

Last year, the fundraiser brought in $14,700 from officers working at 10 locations, Tennessee Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics said. They added in a social media post that officers with Tennessee Highway Patrol, Pigeon Forge Police Department, Sevier County Sheriff’s Office, Soddy Daisy Police Department, Alcoa Police Department, and Sevierville Police Department helped with the 2022 fundraiser, along with some Special Olympics Tennessee athletes and volunteers.

Every year, the Special Olympics has a Law Enforcement Torch Run to raise awareness and money for the Special Olympics movement, according to the Special Olympics Tennessee website. Law enforcement members and Special Olympics athletes carry the “Flame of Hope” into the opening ceremonies of local, state, provincial, national, regional, and world games.

Annually, approximately 97,000 law enforcement members help carry the flame, Special Olympics Tennessee said.