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Ceres Police take over Modesto's Texas Roadhouse for a good cause
Over $10,000 raised for Special Olympics
Line dancing at Texas
Ceres Police Sgt. Bryan Ferreira and Travis Hudson good-naturedly joined employees of Texas Roadhouse in the every half-hour line dancing which is a tradition of the chain. Hudson also waited on tables from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Monday at the Modesto eatery for a Special Olympics fundraising luncheon. - photo by Jeff Benziger

They were slightly out of their jurisdiction and there was no emergency but a number of Ceres Police officers spent three hours mid-day Monday at the Modesto Texas Roadhouse raising funds for Special Olympics of Northern California.

The restaurant chain donated pulled pork sandwich lunches consumed between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. with the expectation that a donation would be made to the charity as part of the “Tip a Cop” fundraiser. Members of the Ceres Police Department were servers and “tips” donated to the cause.

"We had a great time raising awareness and our athletes had some much fun," said Ceres Police Officer Jeffery Godfrey who spearheaded the event. "Thanks to the generosity of our community, we were able to raise over $10,000 for Special Olympics."

Some of the braver officers, such as Sgt. Travis Hudson and Sgt. Bryan Ferreira, participated in the line dance that the chain is famous for having every half hour.

To advertise the event, two Ceres Police patrol cruisers and the Lenco armored vehicle were parked in front of the Dale Road eatery.

Some Special Olympics athletes were present to greet patrons and share their experiences. Special Olympics is the world’s largest sports organization for children and adults with intellectual disabilities and physical disabilities, providing year-round training and activities to 5 million participants and Unified Sports partners in 172 countries.

Godfrey who serves on the Executive Committee of the Special Olympics of Northern California, assigned to work with law enforcement agencies in Stanislaus, Merced and San Joaquin counties.

The primary fundraiser is the police torch run, which involves approximately 200 police agencies and 2,600 officers running in Northern California. It is the largest fundraising vehicle for Special Olympics.

Officer Godfrey’s interest in special needs kids began early in life. When he attended a Special Olympics summer games 10 years that drove him to become a volunteer.

“I was hooked ever since and I truly do feel as though we have been given platforms as police officers to be able to make a difference in people’s lives and it’s something I strive to do every day,” said Officer Godfrey. “Without the support of our administration and department this wouldn’t be possible.”

Godfrey was honored in June with special recognition from Ally Bakalar, Special Olympics’ Region 4 fundraising and events manager.

Godfrey at Texas Roadhouse
Ceres Police Officer Jeffery Godfrey waits on a table of Ceres city employees that included Marcy Pederson (left) and Finance Director Leticia Dias (second from left) at a Special Olympics fundraising luncheon. - photo by Jeff Benziger