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Deputies have hand out for payoffs (for Special Olympics)

Usually when a Sheriff’s deputy approaches, you grab your license, proof of insurance and vehicle registration and wait for the inevitable.

That won’t be quite the case from noon-8 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 27, at the Silverdale Red Robin Restaurant. If a deputy (or maybe even the Sheriff himself) approaches your table, they’re going to want to know if you’d like your strawberry lemonade freshened up or an extra napkin as they take part in the Red Robin “Tip-A-Cop” fund-raising event to benefit Kitsap County’s Special Olympics athletes.

It’s all part of the Law Enforcement Torch Run Campaign for Special Olympics Washington, a cause the KCSO and the Kitsap County Deputy Sheriff’s Guild have participated in for a number of years.

Tip-A-Cop waiters work alongside the Red Robin wait staff, interacting with patrons as they bring silverware, water and the occasional ketchup bottle. In return, any tips they receive go toward Special Olympic competitors in Kitsap County, according to Deputy Scott Wilson. All of the celebrity waiters are volunteering their time during off-duty hours.

“The Special Olympics message is one of hope, spirit and courage and it builds confidence and skills,” said Sheriff Steve Boyer, a long-time supporter. “We see so many bad things every day and by supporting Special Oympics, it touches the soft side of cops.”

The state-wide campaign is taking place at all 31 Red Robin Restaurants in Washington simultaneously. Wilson said the campaign raised $77,000 last year and the goal for 2005 is to raise $100,000.

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