City police raise funds for children’s centers

HARLINGEN — Grilling for a cause has placed $8,000 in the hands of the local nonprofit known as Monica’s and Maggie’s House.

The Harlingen Police Department presented that check to the Cameron County Children’s Advocacy Center Wednesday night at the City Commission meeting.

The barbecue cook-off fundraiser organized by the city’s police force was held under the auspices of the International Bar-B-Que Cookers Association, which judged the 42 teams that entered the contest.

“We have been collaborating with the Harlingen Police Department on this particular event,” said Anna De La Cruz, executive director of the advocacy center. “The last two years I have seen it growing.

“I was particularly amazed with the amount of work and energy that our dedicated police department put into this effort,” she added. “Without them, without their support, without the support of community members and sponsors, we would not be in existence.”

Last year the police barbecue raised just a shade over $7,000 for the nonprofit children’s advocacy group, and this year the check was $8,000 on the dot.

Police Chief Jeffry Adickes told city commissioners that, hard as it is to believe, January will mark his fourth year at the helm of the city’s force.

These community events are a key part of what he has been trying to achieve in Harlingen, he said.

“I’m most proud that this has become a policing philosophy and a way we do business,” Adickes said. “This is not a special event. This is community policing at its best. I’m very proud of the men and women that contributed from the Harlingen Police Department, as well as our sponsors.”

Sponsors of the HPD event were Bass Pro Shops, Boggus Ford Harlingen, Briggs Equipment, Charlie Clark Nissan, Duke Energy, Exceptional Emergency Center, George Cunningham Central Air and Heating, Martin Villafranca LLC, Palms Behavioral Health, Residents Inn by Marriott, Apex Cameron County Wind Farm, PCL Construction, City of Harlingen, Tony Butler Golf Course, Harlingen Fire Department and the Harlingen Parks and Recreation Department.