Rockford police host breakfast with Santa

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ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) -- Dozens gather for a free pancake breakfast with the man in red and local men and women in blue.

Members of the Rockford Police Department host a breakfast with Santa at District Two on Broadway. There was plenty of singing, dancing and of course, free food. The officers say they enjoy hosting events for the community like this one because it gives them a chance to connect with those they serve and protect.

"It's just basically a chance for us to get in the community, positive police interactions so they can see we're regular people and not just police officers and also show support for Christmas and give as much back to the community as we can," says Rockford police officer Eric Thurmond.

Attendees were also asked to bring a wrapped toy to today's event. Officers will distribute the toys to children in local hospitals Christmas Eve.