Sober Grad Night fundraisers to be hosted by local businessesBy: Carol Percy, Reporter Lincoln News Messenger
Sober Grad Night fundraisers:
Monday, Feb. 25 from 5 to 8 p.m.: Beermann’s tri-tip, chicken and rice take-out dinner. Tickets are $10.
Friday, March 1 at 7 p.m.: Bunco Night at the Veteran’s Hall in Lincoln. Tickets are $20.
Saturday April 27: Gun Safe and Rifle Raffle sponsored by the Lincoln Gun Exchange. Tickets are $30 each or 2 for $50.
For more information on these fundraisers, Google Lincoln Sober Grad 2013 or call Jennifer Bowden at 212-7059 or Kimberly Fricke at 415-0201.
Residents will have the opportunity to support a worthy cause and pick up a tasty take-out meal, play Bunco or win a deer rifle — all for the sake of throwing a safe graduation night party for Lincoln High School’s class of 2013.
The annual event, known as Sober Grad Night, is supported by more than 100 Placer county businesses, churches, civic organizations and individuals who are participating in the annual event. It costs nearly $35,000 and hundreds of volunteer hours to organize.
“It takes a lot of energy but it’s all worth it to provide a safe place for our seniors on graduation night,” said Sober Grad Night committee President Jennifer Bowden. “If one DUI arrest, injury or death is prevented by the alcohol-free event, then the efforts to plan and fund Sober Grad Night will have been worth it for the kids and the community.”
Bowden’s connection with the event started in 1999, and since then, five of her children have graduated from Lincoln High School. Her sixth child, Conner, 17, will graduate with the 2013 class.
Begun in 1992 by a group of Lincoln High School parents, Sober Grad Night offers a safe and sober celebration alternative to graduating seniors. The party will be held from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. May 31 at the McBean Park Pavilion.
Festivities will include food, drinks, entertainment, games and prizes.
More than 340 Lincoln High School seniors are expected to participate. Although the entry fee is $40 per graduate, no one is turned away for lack of funds, according to Bowden.
Madie Brown, 17, a senior and Associated Student Body vice-president, said that Sober Grad Night is the senior class’s last opportunity to celebrate as a group.
“It’s our last hurrah at LHS where we can go to have a good time without going out and drinking and driving,” Brown said. “It’s a place to have some good wholesome fun.”
Lincoln High School teacher Mary Macqueen oversees 36 students in the school’s leadership class.
“When the kids see what an amazing event this is, they’ll know how much their parents have done and how much they care,” Macqueen said. “Parents thought kids needed to have something to do to have fun and yet be safe.”
Macqueen said that the 30 parents on the Sober Grad Night committee have worked hard to provide event prizes, which include laptops, I-Pads, kindles, television sets, gas cards, printers, bicycles and cash.
The prizes are practical and appropriate for seniors leaving for college and work, said Mackensie Roland, 17.
“Not everyone’s parents have the money to buy a brand new laptop for them for college. The Sober Grad Night prizes give those kids an opportunity to get some tools for their success,” Roland said.
“One of the great aspects” about Sober Grad Night is that the entire class is invited, said Associated Student Body President Robby Boatman, 17.
“It’s a last chance for us all to come together and celebrate,” Boatman said.
Seventeen-year-old Vanessa Andre said that the event shows how the residents in her hometown “care about the kids.”
Andre’s grandparents moved to Lincoln more than 50 years ago and multiple generations have graduated from Lincoln High School, including her parents.
“The community is very important to us,” Andre said.
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