Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

Local News

June 11, 2014

Community Connections voices opposition to beer sales at Bowen Field

BLUEFIELD — The executive director of the local family resource network for Mercer County is voicing opposition to planned beer sales at upcoming Bluefield Blue Jays games at Bowen Park.

“We had seen the article in the newspaper, and we were unaware a decision was being made to sell alcohol at Bowen Field,” Greg Puckett, executive director of Community Connections, said. “In our line of work, we are continually looking at the environment in which people live in and work and play in. So we are very concerned, and somewhat disappointed, that Bluefield will be having sales of alcohol this year.”

Puckett said children attend the baseball games, and will be exposed to alcohol. He said Bowen Field also is located directly adjacent to Lotito Park and the popular Yakity Yak playground for children.

Puckett said Community Connections is still encouraging area families to attend all of the upcoming Blue Jay games, but not to purchase alcohol.

“We have a grant that will start in July that is going to be the last of the monies for enforcing underage drinking laws,” Puckett said. “We are going to look in light of this situation, and encourage the organization to promote responsibility. We are going to promote cards that say do not give alcohol to minors. This is a big problem. If you look at statistics over 60 percent of people say they get alcohol from friends and family of  legal age.”

Puckett said he called George McGonagle, president of Bluefield Baseball, Inc., Wednesday afternoon to formally express Community Connection’s opposition to the beer sales.

The first home game of the Blue Jays will be June 19 at Bowen Field.

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