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A day of prevention and recovery will be the focus as “Step Out of the Darkness” will take place from 10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 19, beginning at the Pontotoc County Courthouse Plaza in Ada and concluding at East Central University’s Bill S. Cole University Center.

The event, free and open to the public, is being sponsored by the Brandon Whitten Institute for Addiction and Recovery at ECU and the Pontotoc County Drug Free Coalition.

“Step Out of the Darkness” will begin at 10:30 a.m. with a prayer march from the Pontotoc County Courthouse to the ECU Centennial Plaza. The event then shifts to ECU’s Bill S. Cole University Center where a prevention and recovery rally will begin at 11:30 a.m.

Participants are encouraged to park near the Bill S. Cole University Center and buses will be shuttled to the Pontotoc County Courthouse Plaza to begin the walk. The first shuttle bus runs at 9:30 a.m. with the last shuttle leaving for the Courthouse Plaza at 10 a.m.

Free t-shirts, provided by the Chickasaw Nation State Youth Treatment Grant, will be available to the walkers, who can pick them when they show up at the Courthouse Plaza.

The walkers will depart from the Courthouse Plaza and march down Main Street toward ECU’s Centennial Plaza. Stops will be made along the way for times of prayer.

At noon, the event will feature food, fun and facts in the Bill S. Cole University Center. Entertainment will be included and information booths providing facts about substance abuse, prevention, treatment and recovery will be available. The food will be provided by Citizen’s Bank of Ada, Landmark Bank and H2O Church.

Giveaways will be held at various booths and a grand prize cash drawing will take place at 1:30 p.m. Those who participated in the prayer march are eligible for the grand prize.

For more information on “Step Out of the Darkness” contact Holli Witherington, executive director of the Brandon Whitten Institute, at 580-559-5815. Community businesses can make monetary donations or a donation of goods to go toward basket giveaways or the grand prize drawing, by contacting Witherington.



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