In support of , sponsored by the Burlington Drug & Alcohol Task Force, now celebrating its 30th year, kids, teens and adults came together Friday evening for some good food, music and fun all in support of a weekend of sober-living.
Although winds were high, dozens of Burlington residents trounced down to the Commons and proudly showed off their “I'm Alcohol Free in Burlington This Weekend” pins. The Beatles cover band, Fab4Ever, supplied the tunes while and provided the drinks and food respectively.
Children ran around the pavilion playing games, adults grouped together to chat and teens came down to support the boycott on booze for prom weekend.
Coordinator, Marilyn Belmonte, explained the message behind the weekend when she told Patch, “every year we ask adults to stay alcohol free for one weekend before prom. It's a reminder to teenagers about their parent's expectations concerning underage drinking. This is a reminder, a little push to talk to kids about the dangers of drinking.”
Belmonte went on to detail how the affect of the weekend trickles down to the younger generations when she stated, “Our kids grow up seeing on TV and in commercials and in movies adults always just drinking on the weekends. But, most adults really don't do that. We just want to show another message – we're not anti-alcohol, we want to encourage parents to tell their kids their expectations concerning alcohol. For kids growing up, it will be a good reminder and of course, we're having a lot of fun.”
Speaking with a group of high school freshman, they related the dangers that are inherent with underage drinking and how they have witnessed it in their grade.
Freshman and track star, Patrick Hoarty, said, “its been a problem at the high school. Alcohol is just dangerous sometimes, it's just not cool. There was a girl in our class who had a $1,500 ambulance fee because she drank too much, she had to get her stomach pumped.”
This sentiment has jumped from teens to pre-teens by encouraging them to learn about the dangers that can come from overconsumption.
Thankfully, there were no stories of too much too fast from the younger kids. Instead, supporter and middle school student, Sarah Iler simply related, “alcohol free weekend is great, there's good music and of course the pizza.”
Wrapping things up with a raffle for gift certificates from the event's sponsors: , , , and ; alcohol free weekend is off to a great start.
Be sure and check out our photo gallery of all those that came together to begin alcohol-free weekend.