At 10 a.m. Tuesday, May 16, the Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics begins
outside the Bettendorf Police Department, 1609 State St., Bettendorf, a news release says.

Officers will carry the Special Olympics Flame of Hope for 6.3 miles as they head east on State Street, turn north onto 18th Street, connect with the bike path at Parkway Drive, take that path into Davenport, and end at Rookies Sports Bar, 2818 N. Brady St., Davenport.

You do not have to be a sworn law enforcement officer to participate and you are not required to run the entire distance. Support vehicles will be available to provide water and pick up runners, the release says.

This is just one leg of a statewide fundraiser. During the Iowa Final Leg on May 25, officers will
carry the torch from Des Moines to Ames, ending at the Hilton Coliseum. The torch is passed to a Special Olympics Iowa Athlete, who lights the Olympic Flame at the Opening Ceremonies of the Special Olympics Iowa Summer Games, which takes place May 25-27, the release says.

The Law Enforcement Torch Run began in Iowa in 1987 and continues to grow every year. In 2019, it involved 1,000-plus law enforcement officers and raised more than $1,200,000 for Special Olympics Iowa Athletes. The Bettendorf Police Department has participated for more than 30 years.

Overall, the Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics is the largest grassroots fundraiser
and public awareness vehicle in the world, according to Special Olympics Iowa. The annual Torch
Run and its various fundraising projects – Polar Plunge, Dunkin’ Cop on a Rooftop, etc. – have two goals: to raise money, and to create awareness for the athletes who participate in Special