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Weekend activities curb alcohol trend

Weekends represent a beacon of class-free relaxation for many students as they await the bell during their eighth period class each Friday.

Whether they go out with friends or stay at home, everyone prefers an activity to occupy their Saturday and Sunday vacation. Although the school-free duration often encompasses fun times with friends, weekends may present a temptation for teens: drinking.

According to the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University, ?By the age of 17, seven out of ten teenagers will have been offered an illegal drug and almost half will have attended a party at which teens were drinking alcohol, smoking pot, using cocaine, ecstasy or prescription drugs while a parent was present.?

These statistics may seem overwhelming to campus parents and students. Some students, however, refuse to fit the norm and seek alcohol-free pastimes over the weekend.

Rather than go to parties with friends, senior Mathias Westfall prefers to stay at home and take a break from his academic week.

?I like to watch football on the weekends,? Westfall said. ?I prefer to watch college football and my favorite team is the Florida Gators. I also enjoy traveling to San Francisco to visit my aunt and drink Pete?s Coffee.?

Senior Trevor Bodi participates in activities similar to Westfall. Instead of attending events that may involve substance abuse, he spends his time playing his guitar and teaching guitar lessons to others.

?I like to play the guitar because if I?m ever mad it helps get myself free of anger,” Bodi said. ?I also teach students how to play the guitar. I don?t think teens have to drink alcohol in order to have a good time.”

Weekends also offer an adequate time block for students to work jobs and earn money for personal expenses and college. Although she misses the consumed free time, senior Po-Ting “Jennifer” Yang works at the cash register of a local tea shop to earn extra cash.

?I work at a little tea shop that my uncle owns called East Meets West, also known as E.M.W.,” Yang said. “I don?t really like to work because I can?t do whatever I want and I like to have my free time.?

In addition to other alcohol-free activities, weekends offer an opportunity to exercise creativity. Along with his friend Kyser Anderson, ’12, freshman Brady Lee practices magic tricks to surprise and awe his spectators.

?I like to chill out and relax from the tiresome week,? Lee said. ?When I?m not relaxing I?m doing magic shows for birthday parties. Magic is entertaining for people, and it never gets old like partying does.?

While some teenagers will inevitably choose the drinking path, many find alternatives to alcohol and drug abuse.

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    Maddie YeeMay 17, 2010 at 6:59 am

    Gerald is really fast on the field. He is an amazing sweeper and plays his position very well. He stays strong, despite injuries and pushes his hardest.

    He made some goals this season, but I’m still waiting for a bet to be met.