Deputies patrol Gateway diners – for tips instead of tickets

Here’s why those were Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office personnel waiting tables at the Gateway and Gresham Red Robins…

During the 2015 “Tip a Cop” fundraiser for Oregon Special Olympic,s the Harman and Munkers families’ “little princes and princesses”, along with “Grandma” Smith, say they enjoy being hosted by Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office Sgt. Bryan White at the Mall 205 Red Robin.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton

A career in law enforcement often can have more than its share of taxing moments. That’s why Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO) staff say they enjoyed being “bussers” again on October 24, at both the Gateway and Gresham Red Robin restaurants.

“I volunteer for the “Tip a Cop” fundraiser for Oregon Special Olympics, partly because it ‘balances’ my typically a high-stress job, with giving back to the community in a fun, positive, and friendly way,” smiled MCSO Captain Mary Lindstrand at the event near Mall 205.

Multnomah County Sheriffs Office Captain Mary Lindstrand spends a moment with Special Olympian Camren Krieger.

Specifically, Lindstrand said, from MCSO deputies on up to command staff, they enjoy how bussing tables, bringing beverages, and helping the restaurant’s servers, gives them the opportunity to talk with patrons and tell them more about the Oregon Special Olympics “Training for Life” programs.

“These ‘Special Olympians’ are adults and children that are participating in sports and other events put on by the organization,” Lindstrand told East Portland News. “With the funds raised through events like these, they are able to participate without any cost to themselves. In addition to learning learn how to participate in sports, they also learn valuable ‘life skills’.”

MCSO Sgt. Steve Dangler talks with guests Cheryl Swales, Shalee Owens, Sam Snow about their campaign to support Oregon Special Olympics.

All of the MCSO staffers are “off the clock” for these events, Lindstrand assured us. “Some of them are coming off a shift; others will head out after their time here. We do this on our own time, as a way to give back to the community we serve.”

“As bussers, they are doing very well,” commented Red Robin Mall 205 General Manager Brian Laxton. “It’s fun to see them every year, coming in and taking over the bussing; it’s very cool.”

Red Robin Mall 205 General Manager Brian Laxton talks with MCSO Deputy Kent Krumpschmidt.

And, even though the MCSO folks are asking for donations from patrons, “their being here actually boosts our own server’s tips!” Laxton said. “This is one of the special events that we have done for years. The community loves it, the officers love it, and Oregon Special Olympics benefits from it. It’s an awesome way to serve our community.”

On the way out, Captain Lindstrand reminded that their people also volunteer directly with the Oregon Special Olympics events and programs. “At any of events, you see the joy of participating on their faces. Whether they win or lose, they do their best. There’s nothing better than watching them strive and prevail.”

Do you wish to contribute or volunteer? See the official Oregon Special Olympics website: CLICK HERE.

Also on our Front Page | MCSO Lt. Travis Gullberg is serving up beverages during the annual “Tip a Cop” event.

© 2015 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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