Ask, Listen, Learn Program Creates Waves During Swim Trials

Jun 27, 2012, 09:32 ET from The Century Council

Debbie Phelps and swimmers Mallory Weggemann and Rebecca Soni encourage kids to make healthy choices at USA Swimming's Aqua Zone

OMAHA, Neb., June 27, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Century Council is showcasing its Ask, Listen, Learn: Kids and Alcohol Don't Mix program at USA Swimming's Aqua Zone during the US Swim Team Trials in Omaha, Nebraska, from June 25 through July 2. The exhibit space is free of charge to the community and open from noon to 5 p.m. June 23 and 24 and 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. June 25 through July 2.

This event, which follows the April announcement of the partnership between USA Swimming and The Century Council, will promote the initiative's message of encouraging middle school-aged kids to say "yes" to a healthy lifestyle and "no" to underage drinking. Ask, Listen, Learn aims to empower both parents and kids with information about the dangers of underage drinking and teach them ways to say "no" to alcohol.

The Ask, Listen Learn exhibit will provide tools for parents to start the conversation around underage drinking and living a healthy lifestyle with their kids. According to a survey commissioned by The Century Council, parental influence with regard to underage drinking has increased significantly over the past 10 years. Today, 83 percent of youth ages 10 to 18 years old cite parents as the leading influence in their decision to not drink at all, or not to drink on occasion â€" a statistic which is up 28 percent proportionally from 2003.

While at the Ask, Listen, Learn exhibit, kids can play an interactive game, pick up fun promotional items, take the "Ask, Listen, Learn Pledge" and sign the "star of champions" display. The program will also feature autograph signings and fan photo opportunities with gold medalist swimmer Rebecca Soni and U.S. Paralympic National Team swimmer Mallory Weggemann, as well as a presentation hosted by Debbie Phelps the proud "swim mom" of three elite-level swimmers. Phelps, author of "A Mother for All Seasons," will talk to parents and coaches to address the importance of caregivers engaging in an open dialogue with kids about the risks of underage drinking and understanding the significant role they have on influencing youth (See full guest event schedule below).

"We're fortunate to have the opportunity to work with such influential leaders and role models who can enact and affect positive change among young people in our communities," said Ralph Blackman, President and CEO of The Century Council. "We believe our Ask, Listen, Learn initiative's presence at USA Swimming's Aqua Zone during the Swimming Trials is a powerful way for us to get middle school-aged kids excited about making healthy lifestyle choices."

The Aqua Zone expects to attract more than 60,000 guests over the eight-day event, not including the thousands more reached through social media networks, making the venue an ideal catalyst for reinforcing this healthy lifestyle message and teaching kids to say "yes" to a healthy lifestyle and "no" to underage drinking.

For more information about The Century Council's Ask, Listen, Learn initiative, visit

Event Schedule

Ask, Listen, Learn Aqua Zone Guest Event Schedule:

  • Debbie Phelps â€" June 25, from noon to 2 p.m. Phelps will speak at noon for 20 minutes on the main stage before signing autographs until 1 p.m. At 1 p.m., she will move to the medal stand (opposite the main stage) to take photos with fans (free of charge for the fans and organized by USA Swimming).
  • Mallory Weggemann â€" June 28, 1 to 3 p.m. Mallory will sign autographs on the main stage from 1 to 2 p.m. before moving to the medal stand to take photos with fans from 2 to 3 p.m.
  • Rebecca Soni â€" July 1, noon to 2 p.m. Rebecca will sign autographs on the main stage from noon to 1 p.m. before moving to the medal stand to take photos with fans from 1 to 2 p.m.

About The Century Council
The Century Council, is a national not-for-profit leader in the fight to eliminate drunk driving and underage drinking and is funded by the following distillers: Bacardi U.S.A., Inc.; Beam, Inc.; Brown-Forman; Constellation Brands, Inc.; DIAGEO; Hood River Distillers, Inc.; and Pernod Ricard USA. Headquartered in Arlington, Virginia, The Century Council promotes responsible decision making regarding beverage alcohol and develops and implements innovative programs and public awareness campaigns which ignite action through strategic partnerships. Established in 1991, The Century Council's initiatives are highlighted on its website at and

Darron Moffatt, The Century Council, 202-637-0077

SOURCE The Century Council