COPPERAS COVE — Walmart is recognizing teachers for the hours they spend working to educate youth in Central Texas.

The Copperas Cove Walmart held a teacher appreciation event Saturday afternoon, treating teachers to cake, ice cream and a small gift bag.

“As store manager I feel that it’s important for us to appreciate our teachers because they are the ones who shape our future,” Tania Culpepper said.

Culpepper said teachers began showing up early for the event, which was scheduled to begin at 12:30 p.m.

“We had teachers that started coming up here at 11 a.m., and we just started when they got here,” Culpepper said.

The store had 300 goodie bags put together containing coupons and items that teachers might be able to use in the classroom. By 1 p.m., nearly 200 of bags had been given away.

Stephanie Huckabee, who works as a virtual teacher for Responsive Education out of her home in Copperas Cove, was happy with Walmart’s efforts to recognize education professionals.

“I think its an amazing opportunity for teachers to be able to come get the gifts from Walmart, to see what they can offer the community,” Huckabee said. “I know they’re big with the (teaching) community.”

Culpepper said the first-ever event was promoted entirely on social media, and that she was happy with the strong turnout.

Lampasas Middle School teacher Heather Foreman was also pleased that she and other colleagues were being honored by Walmart.

“We really appreciate that they know that teachers spend time and money on our own classrooms and our own students, and we certainly use Walmart to do that.” Foreman said.

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