At 8:07 a.m. Saturday, a convoy of about 25 law enforcement and emergency vehicles roared through downtown Fulton with their sirens wailing and red lights flashing.
In the convoy of police cars, fire trucks and ambulances were 40 Callaway County youngsters on their way to Walmart for the annual Shop With A Cop event.
The needy youngsters were selected by local social service agencies to participate in the annual event.
Part of the experience for the youngsters is to ride from the Fulton Police Station in an emergency vehicle with lights on and sirens sounding.
The youngsters were brought by their parents at 7 a.m. Saturday to the Fulton Police Station where they were assigned an emergency services office to accompany them on their shopping experience.
"This is always a great experience for the kids as well as the officers helping them," said Sgt. Joe Schramm of the Fulton Police Department.
While at the Police Station, each child received a Christmas stocking filled with gifts from the Dollar General Distribution Center in Fulton and a gift card worth $25.
The youngsters then scrambled into the emergency vehicles from around Callaway County parked at the Police Station. Each youngster had a law enforcement or emergency services volunteer as a guide.
The youngsters also received a $100 gift card to shop at Walmart.
Eight years ago Schramm participated in a similar law enforcement program involving the Holts Summit Police Department.
Schramm suggested a similar event be started in Fulton. The first Shop With A Cop event began in Fulton in 2006 by the Fulton Police Department.
The event grows each year and more county emergency services officers participate each year.
This year's participants included the Fulton Police Department, Fulton Fire Department, Callaway County Sheriff's Department, Missouri State Highway Patrol, Holts Summit Police Department, New Bloomfield Police Department, Callaway County Fire Protection Districts, the Callaway County Ambulance District, and the Missouri Department of Corrections.