Pubdate: Sun, 25 Jun 2006
Source: Daily Record, The (Parsippany, NJ)
Copyright: 2006 The Daily Record
Author: Bea Chang


Junior Golf Tournament To Teach Kids About Drug Abuse Over Burgers, Candy

FLORHAM PARK -- About 100 school-age children will  gather at 
Brooklake Country Club on Wednesday for the  38th Annual Dope Open 
Junior Golf Tournament to raise  awareness of substance abuse and to 
enjoy a fun day  with their friends.

As a part of the senior Dope Open, which will be played  a day later, 
the event allows participants to play for  free in an effort to 
introduce the issues of drug and  alcohol abuse.

"We want to make the kids aware of what's going on, of  the drug 
situation," said Dope Open co-chairman John  Puskar.

The Dope Open was founded in 1968 after Mary Mulholland  learned that 
four children in Morris County had died  from drug and alcohol overdoses.

"I'm a mother of six," Mulholland said. "I was scared  to death that 
it could happen to any of us."

While the senior Dope Open hopes to raise about  $100,000 to donate 
to rehabilitation, battered women  and social services centers, the 
junior Dope Open  focuses on awareness and education for teenagers.

"The key is the juniors, because the kids are the ones  who see it 
happen to their friends," Mulholland said.

The tournament begins with lunch at 11 a.m., during  which hot dogs, 
hamburgers, ice cream and candy will be  served. Two teenagers, a boy 
and a girl from Daytop  Village of Mendham, will talk to the 
participants about  their experience with rehabilitation.

"It really hits home with a lot of the kids because  these (speakers) 
are kids their own age that are going  through rehab," said golf 
tournament co-chairman Jack  Harrigan.

An officer from the Drug Enforcement Administration  also will speak 
about substance abuse.

After lunch, the participants will be separated into  groups based on 
age and preference, and will be  assigned to different holes on the 
golf course. The  golf tournament kicks off with a shotgun start at noon.

Prizes will be awarded at the end of the day.
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