PRINCETON – Football tailgates are a time-honored tradition for Americans. However, excessive drinking at these events is a growing cause for concern. According to the 2011 University of Minnesota BAC Study of Professional Game Day Tailgating (.pdf), one in four people reported having consumed five or more alcoholic drinks. This season, Caron Texas, part of Caron Treatment Centers, a nationally recognized non-profit provider of alcohol and drug addiction treatment, has teamed up with Southern Methodist University to host a sober tailgating event. The event is part of an ongoing initiative by SMU to offer healthy and fun alternatives for individuals and their families living in recovery and those who want to enjoy the game without alcohol.

Sober tailgating provides a way for local communities to participate in fun, pre-football game festivities without feeling anxious or pressured by the presence of alcohol. Dallas-based SMU is one of the first universities in the state to offer official sober tailgating events for all home game attendees. SMU developed the sober tailgating program in conjunction with The Twelfth Step Ministry, a non-profit organization that provides a safe, inclusive community, educational support and training for those in recovery, as well as for professionals in North Texas. Caron Texas will sponsor its event during the SMU-Temple game on Oct. 26.

“We are delighted to be a part of a movement which offers a fun and safe space for those in recovery,” said Marie Krebs, MS, Licensed Professional Counselor, LCDC, and Therapist at The Twelfth Step Ministry. “We are also able to encourage a fun option for the community that is not alcohol-centric.”

Caron Texas logo

In addition to SMU, Caron Texas has also participated in a kickoff sober tailgate event hosted by Recovery First Tailgaters at the LSU vs. TCU game on Aug. 31 at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington. Recovery First Tailgaters is hosting a number of sober tailgates at college football events throughout the country during the 2013 season.

“We want to remind people about why they loved football to begin with before alcohol entered the picture,” said Mike Puls, Vice President and Executive Director, Caron Texas. “Our goal is to help individuals in recovery, their families and members of the Dallas-Fort Worth community enjoy their lives in a healthy and productive way.”

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About Caron Texas

Caron Texas, just 40 miles north of Dallas, opened its doors in July 2010 and provides comprehensive, high-quality, gender-specific addiction treatment to adults in Texas and the Southwest. Part of the Caron Treatment Centers network, the 28,000-square-foot facility is set on 40 acres and offers many amenities for patients and their families, such as a new 14,000-square-foot fitness center and swimming pool, in a serene and secluded setting. For more information, visit

About Caron Treatment Centers

Caron Treatment Centers is a nationally recognized non-profit provider of alcohol and drug addiction treatment. With over 55 years in the field, Caron is one of the oldest and largest organizations offering primary, relapse and longer-term residential treatment for adolescents, young adults, adults and older adults, as well as families affected by the disease of addiction. Caron’s treatment is gender separate and gender-specific. Caron has extensive experience in the treatment of co-occurring psychological/psychiatric disorders within its patient community. Formerly the Caron Foundation, the acclaimed Caron Treatment Centers network operates treatment centers in Wernersville, Pa.; Dallas; and Caron Renaissance in Boca Raton, Fla. Caron also operates Hanley Center in West Palm Beach and Gate Lodge in Vero Beach, Fla. Caron has regional offices in Boston, Bermuda, New York City, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C. For more information, visit