Campus News

How Do True Blue Kentuckians Enjoy Game Day? By Drinking Responsibly

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photo of Kroger Field at night
Participants in news conference about responsible drinking for UK-Georgia game.

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Nov. 2, 2018) The Kentucky Distillers’ Association (KDA) has teamed up with the University of Kentucky, Keeneland and a coalition of Bluegrass supporters to make this weekend’s historic game a memorable one with three responsible drinking programs from Lyft, Better Drinking Culture and The Mocktail Project.

The group has raised $20,000 — including a $10,000 match by the on-demand ride service Lyft — to prevent impaired driving with $20 sober ride discounts in Lexington this Saturday between noon and 2 a.m. Fans of legal drinking age can enter promo code “CATURDAY” in the Lyft app to redeem discounts on rides to and from the game, area bars or restaurants, hotels or local watch parties.

“We want our football fans to have a safe and enjoyable experience on game day,” said UK Police Chief Joe Monroe. “This program for those of legal age who choose to drink will greatly assist us in making the entire game day environment safer.”

UK Police encourage Lyft drivers and riders celebrating at Kroger Field on Saturday to use the pull-off on Complex Drive in front of the Johnson/Seaton Center for their drop-off/pick-up location.

“The well-being and safety of our campus community, our Wildcat fans and Lexington as a whole is of paramount importance to the University of Kentucky,” added Assistant Provost for Student Well-Being Andrew Smith. “We appreciate our community partners coming together to make this happen.”

Other coalition members include UK HealthCare, VisitLex, the Coalition of Ignition Interlock Manufacturers, Maker’s Mark and Brown-Forman.

Lyft rides are just one of the responsible drinking activations planned for the weekend in which UK plays for the right to play in the SEC Championship football game, said KDA President Eric Gregory. “This is one of the biggest games in the history of Big Blue Nation,” he said. “We want fans to remember it.”

In addition to the Lyft program, a grassroots social impact movement called Better Drinking Culture (BDC) will be tailgating at Kroger Field Saturday alongside UK’s Campus Recreation and Wellness Department. BDC encourages consumers to develop a more mindful relationship with alcohol.

Fans and students of legal drinking age can visit BDC at UK’s Student Wellness tent before the game to share their personal perspective about Kentucky’s drinking culture and learn more about the group’s effort to help consumers drink better and live healthier.

“BDC advocates that alcohol should be a choice — not an expectation,” stated Better Drinking Culture CEO Jason Ley. “We’re excited to be at Saturday’s tailgate to remind fans that drinking within your own personal limits can influence better academic and athletic performance, better relationships, and better communities.”

BDC will be documenting the day across their social media channels with handle @betterdrinkingculture and giving away free BDC and UK swag. You can learn more about BDC at www.betterdrinkingculture.org.

Finally, to promote inclusion and flavorful options for fans who choose not to drink alcohol, The Mocktail Project has concocted a custom drink recipe that can be easily made at home, with or without the spirits.

To make a zero-proof “Caturday Splash,” mix 2 ounces of lemon simple syrup with 4 ounces of blue curacao syrup and top off with Ale-8 One. Garnish with a few blueberries, fresh mint, and a lemon wheel and add smoked sugar around the rim.

Add 1.5 ounces of Kentucky bourbon if you choose to imbibe.

“As a lifelong Cats fan, I’m adamant no one should miss the celebrations for Saturday’s game,” said Jesse Hawkins, founder of The Mocktail Project. “We’re reminding fans to be aware of who they’re with and what they have available to serve at parties.”

The Mocktail Project, a nonprofit in Louisville, Kentucky, started with seed funding from the Kentucky Distillers’ Association, partners with the spirits and hospitality industries to offer flavorful options for when consumers choose not to drink alcohol. Fans can find recipes and mocktail establishments online at www.themocktailproject.com or on Instagram at @themocktailproject.

“Saturday’s efforts are one example of KDA’s larger commitment to build a better drinking culture where sober rides are prevalent, moderation is aspirational, and alcohol is a choice — not an expectation,” said KDA Director of Social Responsibility Ali Edelstein.

“We’re excited to bring these partnerships to Lexington to help keep fans safe and make this day great.”

UK is the University for Kentucky. At UK, we are educating more students, treating more patients with complex illnesses and conducting more research and service than at any time in our 150-year history. To read more about the UK story and how you can support continued investment in your university and the Commonwealth, go to: uky.edu/uk4ky. #uk4ky #seeblue