CAPE MAY – The drinks were flowing in Cape May Tuesday night, July 18, but not the kind you might suppose.
The HEROtini Challenge, the HERO Campaign’s summer-long competition to find the next best mocktail at the Jersey Shore, came to Cape May and provided patrons with the opportunity to try each drink from the participating restaurants, including Lucky Bones Backwater Grille, The Ebbitt Room, The Rusty Nail and The Brown Room at Congress Hall.
Traveling on a trolley donated by the Mid-Atlantic Center for the Arts, participants tasted each mocktail entry, which was crafted by a designated HERO bartender in an effort to garner some votes, and promote the use of designated drivers.
Catherine Wilson, the HERO bartender representing Lucky Bones, explained her reason for taking part in the positive competition: “Every single person who comes to our town is an essential part of our community. From the loyal regulars to the visitors just passing through, we have a responsibility to take make sure they have fun and get home safe. This drink helps us to check both those boxes by providing a refreshing, fun, driver-safe beverage.” Wilson’s mocktail, “The Mean Green HERO,” is garnering much attention thanks to a surprising, secret ingredient.
With 33 Cape May and Atlantic County restaurants and bars participating, the contest was designed to create delicious drinks for the appointed designated driver, supporting the mission of the HERO Campaign to make the use of designated drivers “as automatic as wearing a seatbelt.”
Charley Gaudio, property manager of The Rusty Nail, feels personally invested in the HEROtini Challenge, which is why he worked with HERO bartender to come up with their entry, “The Creamsicle.” “I also teach driver’s education to high schoolers, and we spend a lot of time talking about the importance of responsible driving. The HERO Campaign is often an important part of that dialogue. This contest is another great and positive way to reinforce that message.”
The HEROtini Challenge is taking place from Memorial Day to Labor Day, during which time patrons and friends can go to herotini.org to vote for their favorite mocktail, their favorite HERO bartender, and the most HEROic establishment. To better provide opportunities to taste the mocktails, the HERO Campaign is hosting regional “tasting nights” to promote the participating businesses, and promote the use of designated drivers. The Cape May Mocktail Night was the first of six such regional tasting nights that will be held throughout the summer.
The HERO Campaign for Designated Drivers®, seeks to end drunk driving tragedies nationwide by promoting the use of safe and sober designated drivers. Our goal is simple: to register one million designated drivers and make having a designated driver be as automatic as wearing a seatbelt.
The HERO Campaign is a federally registered, 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that partners with law enforcement agencies, schools and colleges, bars, taverns and restaurants, the U.S. Navy, professional sports teams, state divisions of highway safety and community chapters across the country.
In 2000 John Elliott, a Graduate of the Naval Academy, was struck and killed by a drunken driver on his way home for his mother’s birthday. The driver had been arrested on DUI charges and released only to get back in the car drunk, killing himself and John.
Be a hero. Be a designated driver.