In the famous words of Doug, “To a night we will never forget!”
Well, the Wolf Pack did forget and we were left with Bradley Cooper trying to find his friend after a night of partying. This pretty much sums the Hangover series. It sure made people wonder if getting drunk and doing drugs really gets you to a point like this. Who can forget Gwen Cummings from 28 Days, a movie in which she drove a car into her sister’s wedding in a drunken haze.
There are hundreds of movies, like the ones mentioned above, that tackle the subject of excessive drinking.
We saved the non-alcoholic drink recipes for last. Right now we want to talk about Alcohol Awareness Month. Started by the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, the program was first introduced in April 1987. You might think that with the alarming increase in alcohol abuse rate, this program was and is aimed at adults, but it was actually created for teenagers and college-going students. According to a report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), around 88,000 people die every year from alcohol. Another recent report by the CDC revealed that in the past year, 65 million Americans engaged in binge drinking. Every year, around 4,700 teens die due to alcohol abuse, and most of the deaths occur due to drunk driving.
This offers insight into how dangerous alcohol can be for the person who is drinking it and the other individual who comes into the crosshairs of an accident. Alcohol Awareness Month has become a national event… a movement, to be more accurate, that raises awareness about the dangers of alcoholism.
Importance of Alcohol Awareness
“Denial” is a small word that has a huge impact on a person’s psyche. For centuries, people have resorted to alcohol as a way to cope with a difficult situation such as the loss of employment or death of a loved one.
The real issue here is when a person reaches for a beer the moment he/she feels anxious. Once your mind stops working, depression sets and this becomes a cycle. The reason why denial is one of the major characteristics when it comes to alcoholism is because people usually try to avoid the truth.
The Alcohol Awareness Month is celebrated in community centers, universities, and most important of all in treatment facilities. Seminars and conferences are held that talk about the disadvantages of alcohol consumption.
Every year, the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence (NCADD) comes up with a theme that targets certain things in life. This year, the 32nd Alcohol Awareness Month will be celebrated. The theme is:
“Changing Attitudes: It’s Not a ‘Rite of Passage’.”
The theme is designed to bring attention to the opportunities that families, individuals, and communities hold. The dangers of alcohol are deadly. Parents often forgive underage drinking just like the “rite of passage.” We can’t sit back and hope that one day they will “get through it.” People need to change their attitudes and take interest in everything happening around them. Learning about drugs and alcohol and then teaching what they have learned to their kids will allow them to create a support group.
In this year’s events, every organization will address underage drinking through awareness campaigns, media strategies, local events, and educational programs. NCADD will position its camps in numerous communities and provide millions of families and individuals with assistance through intervention, prevention, education, recovery support services, treatment, and information.
The event also provides people the opportunity to make proclamations of their own on behalf of their community or city. There’s a procedure you have to follow. If you are interested in holding a press conference of your own, click here to find out what to do.
Here are a few examples of proclamations:
The theme of the event goes at the top and then comes your proclamation.
“Changing Attitudes: It’s not a ‘rite of passage’.”
WHEREAS, alcohol is the most commonly used addictive substance in the United States
WHEREAS, excessive drinking is responsible for more than 4,300 deaths among underage youth each year
WHEREAS, more than 1.6 million young people reported driving under the influence of alcohol in the past year
WHEREAS, drinking by persons under the age of 21 is linked to 189,000 emergency room visits
WHEREAS, young people who begin drinking before age 15 are four times more likely to develop alcohol dependence than those who begin drinking at age 21
WHEREAS, the typical American will see 100,000 beer commercials before he or she turns 18
WHEREAS, a supportive family environment is associated with lowered rates of alcohol use for adolescents
WHEREAS, kids who drink are more likely to be victims of violent crime, to be involved in alcohol-related traffic crashes, and to have serious school-related problems
WHEREAS, kids who have conversations with their parents and learn a lot about the dangers of alcohol and drug use are 50 percent less likely to use alcohol and drugs than those who don’t have such conversations
The Effects of Alcoholism
Just to make you understand what alcoholism can do to you, here are its short-term and long-term health risks:
Short-Term Health Risks
- Drowning incidents
- Motor vehicle crashes
- Sexual assault
- Intimate partner violence
Alcohol Poisoning Your Reproductive Health
- Unintended pregnancy
- Risky sexual behaviors
- Sexually transmitted diseases (HIV)
- Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASDs)
Long-Term Health Risks
- Digestive problems
- High blood pressure
- Heart disease
- Liver disease
- Memory and Learning Problems
- Mental Health
- Poor school performance
- Family problems
- Lost productivity
- Alcohol dependence
So now that you have an idea about how Alcohol Awareness Month is celebrated and what events are held by NCADD, let’s move on to the delicious non-alcoholic drink recipes.
6 Non-Alcoholic Drink Recipes
Cherry-Infused Dr. Pepper Punch
Pumpkin spice has nothing on this drink because when summer comes calling for chilled Margaritas, it sucks to be sober. Well, what if we told you that you can keep that chip in your pocket and enjoy a cool drink. Leave the traditional cinnamon and apple drinks behind because we’ve got a pretty simple drink for you whose star is Dr. Pepper!
- Dr. Pepper™ soda: 2 liters
- Pure cherry juice: 1 liter
- Ginger ale: 1 liter
- Maraschino cherries with syrup: 13.5 oz (1 jar)
- Pomegranates: 1 cup
- Crushed ice
- Take a large glass punch bowl and add maraschino cherries and crushed ice in it (set aside a small amount of maraschino cherry syrup aside)
- Take a wooden spoon and give the ice mixture a good swirl
- Add Dr. Pepper, cherry juice and ginger ale into the bowl
- Top with more ice and sprinkle pomegranates on top
- Pour the remaining maraschino cherry syrup in the bowl before placing it on the table
Sparkling Pear Punch
Nothing beats the sweet taste of pear! If you are looking for a cool drink to quench your thirst after coming home from a hot working day, then this is what you need. It’s pretty simple to make and requires only a few ingredients. The sour taste of lemon compliments the sweetness of pear and provides a punch of energy.
- Pear juice: 2 cups
- Lemon juice: 2 tbsp
- Sugar: ½ cup
- Ginger ale: 2 liters
- Sliced fresh pear
- In a large glass punch bowl, pour the pear the juice
- Mix in the ginger ale and then add lemon juice
- Stir in sugar
- Wait for a few minutes for the sugar to dissolve and then add in the crushed ice
- Give the drink a nice swirl and then add the fresh slices of pear
Pineapple Ginger Sparkler
The freshness of orange and the subtle spiciness of basil combined together in a drink will be truly a treat. Yes, it’s a pineapple sparkler but those orange slices on top are what add in the punch. If you are craving a drink, then prepare a batch of this and call over your friends for Happy Hour.
- Ginger ale: 4 cups
- Pineapple juice: 4 cups
- Fresh ginger (sliced thinly): 2 pieces
- Orange (thinly sliced like wedges): 1
- Fresh basil leaves or rosemary: ½ cup
- Crushed ice
- Take a pitcher that has a big, round bottom
- Pour pineapple juice and ginger ale into the pitcher
- Add fresh slices of fresh ginger and orange
- Finally add crushed ice and swirl the drink with a spoon
- Before serving, sprinkle basil leaves on top
Sangrias can become the life of the party if made right. Break out your celebratory spirit this Alcohol Awareness Month and set up a drink bar. Sangrias contain sweet red wine but that doesn’t mean that you can’t enjoy one without alcohol. Slice and dice a few fruits, chuck them together in a pitcher and let the festivities can begin.
- Passion fruit juice: 4 cups
- Ginger ale: 8 cups
- Kiwi (sliced): 1
- Melon balls: 1 cups
- Orange (sliced): 1
- Star fruit juice: 1 cup
- Lime (sliced): 1
- Fresh cranberries: 1 cup
- In a large pitcher, add all the fruits and then pour in sparkling water
- Swirl the drink a few times, until it changes color
- Add the ginger ale and place the pitcher in the fridge
Non-Alcoholic White Grape Spritzer
Who doesn’t love to pop grapes! Do you find it frustrating when a single grape doesn’t give you that sweet and sour punch you are hoping to get hit with? Stuffing your mouth with them seems so childish. Why not make a Spritzer instead? Giving you the perfect combination of white and green grapes, this drink is so light and tasty that you won’t be able to stop yourself.
- Green frozen grapes: ½ cup
- Red frozen grapes: ½ cup
- Orange (sliced): 1
- Lemon sliced: 1
- Chilled ginger ale: 4 cups
- White grape juice: 4 cups
- Take a pitcher that has a big, round bottom and add all the grapes
- Squish them a little and then add ginger ale
- Swirl the drink so that the pulp mixes well with the ginger ale
- Add the white grape juice and top with lemon and orange slices
Blueberry Moscow Mule Mocktail
Who says you need to have booze to enjoy a drink? Take a handful of blueberries and crush them the old fashioned way. The chunky goodness of these berries and the punch of lemon will blow you away. This is a drink you need to sneak into your office and enjoy when your colleagues are not round. Why? Because they might want a sip! The bright color of this Mocktail is what reels you in. When we say that this drink is great for enjoying Alcohol Awareness Month, you better give it chance.
- Fresh blueberries: ¼ cup
- Lime juice: 1 tbsp
- Sugar: 2 tsp
- Ginger ale: 1 cup
- Crushed ice
- In a large bowl, add blueberries, sugar and lime wedges
- Use a muddler to squish the ingredients until a thick, pulpy and syrupy mixture has formed
- In a copper mug, pour the blueberry mixture and add crushed ice
- Pour ginger ale and stir the drink lightly
Are you ready to call over your friends for some fun drinking games? Happy Alcohol Awareness Month!