By DIANE DIERKS
Clay County community agencies and law enforcement officials continue preparations for the Red Ribbon March, scheduled for Monday, Oct. 30.
At 9:15 a.m., fifth graders from Staunton, Van Buren, Forest Park, Meridian, Cornerstone, Clay City, Eastside and Jackson Township schools will meet at the Clay County YMCA and begin their march to the courthouse carrying banners in celebration of Red Ribbon Week.
Red Ribbon Week is part of a national drug prevention campaign that started in 1985 in response to the death of Special Agent Enrique Camarena, who was murdered by drug traffickers in Mexico, according to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency. Each year, over 80 million Americans participate in Red Ribbon Week events to take a stand against drugs and pay honor to those who have sacrificed their lives in the war on drugs.
After students complete the march to the courthouse, they will take part in a proclamation ceremony and then break into groups to visit designated sites and participate in the following activities.
- Site One: Justice Center tour, police cruiser viewing and related law enforcement activities. This will take place at the Justice Center on Jackson St.
- Site Two: Judge Akers and Steve Sutherland will conduct a methamphetamine education program in the Clay Superior Courtroom, located on the second floor of the courthouse.
- Site Three: Judge Robert Pell with the Clay Circuit Court will have a presentation.
- Site Four: Clay City and Northview S.A.D.D. chapters will have activities in the back parking lot of the Justice Center. Sponsors Debbie Allen and Jane Jackson will coordinate.
The sessions will conclude at 1:50 p.m. and students will return to their respective schools. In case of inclement weather, the program will take place at the YMCA in Brazil. People traveling to the courthouse on Monday should be aware that some streets might be blocked off for the day's events.