Photos: Here’s why they’re saying ‘No’ in Riverhead

BARBARAELLEN KOCH PHOTO | Guest of honor Curis Highsmith Jr. (center), surrounded by Pulaski Street students during a picnic Friday.

The 27th annual “Say No to Drugs March” sponsored by the Riverhead Community Awareness program kicked off at 9:30 Friday with Pulaski Street School’s 5th and 6th graders decked out in white t-shirts reading “Drug Free Body.”

The students walked down Pulaski Street carrying signs with slogans such as “Willpower” and shouting three simple words loud and clear: “Just Say No.”

CAP volunteers, teachers, parents, other school officials and politicians marched with the students behind the Riverhead NJROTC color guard and high school band members.

The master of ceremonies was town Councilman Jim Wooten and this year’s guest of honor was Curtis Highsmith Jr., a 1990 Riverhead High School graduate and Bryant College graduate. He formally worked with Donald Trump and is now a senior loan consultant in Southampton with HSBC bank.

He told the students that he understands just how much pressure there is on them to try drugs and alcohol.

He said ‘we have to instill in you a reason to say no.’

He had the students stand up and recite the following.

I have a destiny-that’s why I say no.
I have a purpose- that’s why I say no.
I have a goal-that’s why I say no.
I have a future-that’s why I say no.
I am a leader not a follower-that’s why I say no.
I respect my family-I have integrity-that’s why I say no.
My mind is made up-that’s why I say no.
I have the power-that’s why I say no.

The 2012 CAP essay contest winners were 5th grader Regan Montefusco and 6th grader Matt Hanson.

Each received a $100 Tanger Outlets gift card.

The Royal Order of the Moose provided a picnic lunch of hot dogs, potato chips, soda and ice cream, during which Mr. Wooten said, “Say yes to ice cream.”

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