SLOGAN WINNERS — Riley Larson and Jette Pruttis showoff equipment bags filled with various goodies they won in the county health departments’ annual tobacco free slogan contest. Larson won first place and Pruttis was the runner up. I-O Photo by Buck Traxler
The Pondera County Health Department (PCHD) is pleased to announce its second Annual Tobacco Free Slogan Contest. Teaming up with Little League Baseball and Softball, the program calls on players ages 8-14 to create a ten-word phrase describing the dangers of spit tobacco.
Chew. Snuff. Spit. Dip. These are all examples of smokeless tobacco products. Smokeless tobacco is not harmless tobacco, and is not a safe alternative to smoking.
Each year, anywhere from 10 to 16 million Americans put their health at risk by using spit tobacco products.
Tobacco use is linked to cancers of the oral cavity, larynx, pharynx, esophagus, stomach and pancreas. Smokeless tobacco products are highly addictive, and youth are at particular risk for nicotine addiction.
The amount of nicotine absorbed from these products is greater than the amount delivered by a cigarette. “By sponsoring this contest, we hope to make youth more aware of the dangers of using tobacco,” commented Nicki Sullivan LPN and Tobacco Prevention Specialist at the PCHD.
The Pondera County Health Department is offering free Quit Spit Kits and can provide you with information on the Montana Tobacco Quit Line, or you may contact the Quit Line at 1-866-485-QUIT (7848).
Last year, The NSTEP (National Spit Tobacco Program) joined a coalition of organizations in limiting the use of smokeless tobacco products in Major League ballparks.
This contest provides an opportunity for Softball and Little League athletes to create a dialogue about the harms of tobacco use on and off the field.
“We are truly amazed and extremely proud of the creativity and passion these children bring in promoting a tobacco-free lifestyle amongst their peers,” Sullivan said.
This year’s wining slogan is “It’s not hip to spit, so skip the dip!” This was created by Riley Larson, daughter of Doug and Christine Larson. She is 10 years old and plays for the Devil Rays, girls’ fast pitch team.
She won an equipment bag, filled with various goodies. As well as her slogan printed on a banner that will be displayed throughout Pondera County.
This year’s runner-up is Jette Pruttis, with the slogan, “Champions are too legit to spit. “ He won a bag with various baseball goodies. His slogan will be displayed on a poster throughout the county as well.
For more information on smokeless tobacco, contact Prevention Specialist Nicki Sullivan LPN at the PCHD, 271-3247.