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Embracing Sober Sports Experiences

Earlier this month, one of the biggest sports events of the year occurred. Super Bowl Sunday undoubtedly gathered millions of people in front of the TV. And with that came millions of beer cans, wine glasses, shots and what have you. The truth of the matter is, sports watching and alcohol have long been associated with one another. But on the plus side, more sober gatherings are happening across the country that allow people to enjoy games with zero temptations.

The big trend this month was the Sober Super Bowl Parties, which happened in multiple big cities. In fact, many media outlets reported on such events; interviewing organizers and recovery advocates who welcomed sports fans into their alcohol-free zones.

The Providence Journal, for example, highlighted a Rams vs. Patriots party which took place at a local recovery center. There, the door became open to people in treatment, AA members and anyone who prefers sodas to shots. Many attendees were interviewed for the outlet and praised this growing trend.

“Everything is better sober,” spokesman Willie Walton told the Journal.  “For one, you can focus on the game and remember a lot more. And you don’t have to worry about getting pulled over on your way home.”

Walton, of course, focused on another important point when it comes to watching championship sports games. Occasions like these typically see big spikes in drunk driving accidents and arrests. Checkpoints are often set up as well (and rightfully so), to stop intoxicated motorists after the Bowl wraps up. At these types of events, all of those risks go out the window and safety is pushed to the forefront.

Another recovery clinic, known as THRIVE, keeps that trend going all year long. They regularly broadcast sober MLB, NBA and NFL viewing parties; where guests can enjoy camaraderie and sports talk, without dangerous substances passed in front of their face. Founder Jeffrey Reynolds emphasized that companionship during these types of events is important too. Often times, temptations can increase if you’re home alone during a big game. Here, there is constant sober support and encouragement.

“At many Super Bowl parties, a recovering alcoholic sipping water or soda can feel awkward, like you don’t fit in” Reynolds told the Newsday outlet. “Here, you can feel more comfortable in a setting without alcohol. The alternative is often sitting home by yourself or around others who are drinking, risking a relapse.”