2/13/2013 11:18:00 AM Pizza box topper aimed at curbing underage drinking Humboldt Elementary School student crafts 1 winner of design contest
From left, Guido’s Pizza owner Brandy Varacalli, Sarah Mastrocola, PVPD Det. James Tobin, contest winner Brianna Mastrocola, and Dustin Mastrocola.
Brianna Mastracola of Prescott Valley drew this poster design, which won the 3rd to 5th grade category.
Special to the Tribune
A recent Arizona Youth Survey indicates that young people in Yavapai County engage in underage drinking activities at levels above state and national averages (source: azcjc.gov).
'This is a community problem,' said Prescott Valley Police Detective James Tobin, who also serves as chairman of the MATForce Underage Drinking Task Force. "Survey results also indicate that youth in our county have a low perception of risk to the dangers of underage drinking."
Tobin said young people in Yavapai County also report that their primary way of getting access to alcohol is through siblings and older friends.
"People in the 21-25 year age range especially need to start thinking twice about providing alcohol to those who are under 21," he said.
Tobin said in 2013 area law enforcement will direct increased attention to those individuals who host underage drinking parties and those who provide alcohol to underage drinkers.
"We need to turn these numbers around," he said.
In an additional effort to raise community focus to the problem of underage drinking, the MATForce Underage Drinking Task Force recently sponsored a pizza box topper design contest. Participants were asked to design a message on the theme of underage drinking awareness. The contest was open to youth in three age categories throughout Yavapai County.
The winning entrants were Brianna Mastrocola of Prescott Valley's Humboldt Elementary School (3rd grade to 5th grade age group), Cody Wager of Cottonwood Middle School (6th-8th grade) and Yazmine Z. of Mingus Mountain Academy (9th-12th). The MATForce Underage Drinking Task force selected the winning entries on Jan. 16 and presented each winner with a $100 gift card from Target.
The MATForce Underage Drinking Task Force gives special thanks to all of the Prescott and Prescott Valley area restaurants who assisted in distributing the 2013 pizza box toppers. Participating restaurants include Guido's Pizza, Dominoes, Papa John's, Pizza Hut, Little Caesar's, Streets of New York, Nick and Willy's, Rosa's Restaurant, Two Mama's and Tastebuds Pizza. Restaurants in Cottonwood and Sedona participated as well.
"We're happy to help raise awareness to the problem of underage drinking," said Guido's Pizza owner Brandy Varacalli.