Cops stand on rooftop to raise money for Special Olympics


Charlie Coffey/Iowa State Daily

Officer Nick Grossman holds a ladder for a firefighter outside of Dunkin’ Donuts on Sept. 18. The ISU Police Department handed out vouchers for free coffee in exchange for donations toward the Special Olympics and the Fire Department cleared the rooftop of excess water.

Emily Eppens

Cop cars decorated the Ames Dunkin Donuts parking lot on Friday while Ames and Iowa State Police stood on the rooftop and handed out drive-through orders. 

While the weather was crisp and clear, the cops soon had to come down off the roof – the fire department needed their ladder back.

The area police departments volunteered their time to raise funds for the Special Olympics at 6 a.m. to 11 a.m. 

“We’ve gotten very positive responses so far,” said Nick Grossman, an Iowa State police department officer. “It’s kind of gone in spurts, for awhile there will be about 20 people in line, and the next there’s only one or two.”

Dunkin Donuts’ Cops on a Rooftop event happens annually all over the country, though this is Iowa’s first year participating. Chicago’s events brings in the most support for the event, according to Lynn Parsons, Ames Dunkin Donuts restaurant manager, and all funds go straight to the Special Olympics.

The Law Enforcement Torch Run, a police enforcement running event from Des Moines to Ames, opens the ceremony. Special Olympics athletes are invited to run with the officers.

“It’s a pretty exciting fundraiser for us, it’s a special partnership between law enforcement, Dunkin Donuts and Special Olympics,” Parsons said. “I donated too. [Employees] already get free coffee, but it’s all about the cause.”

Nicki Mullins, a freshman in world languages and cultures, said that she views the fundraiser as important for the Special Olympics athletes.

“I knew some kids in high school that competed,” Mullins said. “It’s a really positive thing for them.”

Every person who donated received a coupon for a free medium coffee. 

Ames Police Officer Sergeant Mark Watson said that the police departments help raise funds for the Special Olympics in multiple events throughout the year, including a similar Cop on Top event at Walmart and an event at the Des Moines Airport.

“I like interacting with the public; everyone comes out for this great cause and everybody helps out,” said Iowa State Police officer and event spokesman, Derek Dobel. “We really appreciate it.”