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Los Banos Police Department
Wednesday July 2nd, 2014 :: 03:20 p.m. PDT


A Busy Summer Season for PAL: Sober Graduation and Junior Giants

The annual Sober Graduation event has been giving Los Banos’ graduating High School Seniors a safe place to celebrate since 1984. Sober Graduation is an event that is held all over the country with the goal of preventing the negative consequences of underage drinking. Sober graduation is coordinated by the Los Banos Police Activities League Officer Noah Jones. The activities and large number of prizes entice High School Seniors to spend the night at “Sober Grad” instead of attending parties where there may be alcohol present. Los Banos has been extremely fortunate that there have been no accidents involving alcohol on graduation night since the program’s inception.

The 2014 Sober Graduation Celebration was held at Pacheco High School on June 6. Over 300 Seniors from Los Banos, Pacheco and San Luis High Schools attended this year’s event. The doors opened after the conclusion of graduation ceremonies. The festivities continued until 5:00 a.m

The community’s involvement is vital to the survival of this program. In addition to the yearly donations from local merchants and citizens, this Sober Graduation received two significant donations. One donation was a $2000.00 donation from the Los Banos Police Department. This donation was made available from the Prevention of Underage Drinking Fund associated with the City of Los Banos Social Host Ordinance. The Social Host Ordinance was added to the City of Los Banos Municipal Code in June of 2008. This ordinance allows Police to issue citations to the owners of homes where underage drinking takes place.

“Los Banos is very fortunate. Year after year, Officer Noah Jones runs one of the most successful PAL programs in the valley. All the programs are low-cost and they stay that way due to the enormous volunteer efforts from the members of this community.”
-Gary Brizzee, Chief of Police

The Los Banos Sober Graduation Fund also received a $2000.00 donation from the Merced County Chiefs of Police Association.

Los Banos Police Activities League is also celebrating 20 years of Junior Giants here in Los Banos. Enrollment in this year’s Junior Giants Program is the largest in PAL history. We have 527 players and 128 volunteer coaches and team parents. Sponsored by The Giants Community Fund, the Junior Giants program is a free, non-competitive, co-ed baseball program.

The program offers more than just baseball for its participants. Junior Giants focuses on character development, education, health and bullying prevention. During the 8 week long program, Junior Giant players learn the four bases of character development: Confidence, Integrity, Teamwork, and Leadership.

They also are encouraged to participate in the “Round the Bases” summer reading program where players keep track of books read throughout the summer and receive Giant prizes per the number of minutes read. An anti-bullying prevention art contest and a healthy eating, soda free summer is also a weekly theme. This year a banner will be posted on each of the four baseball fields each week at the 7th Street Ballpark to remind the players and volunteers of the weekly message.

Los Banos PAL is grateful to the Giants Community Fund for offering this program. We’re also proud to be one of very few cities participating in Junior Giants baseball for all 20 years!

The Los Banos Police Activities League would like to thank the community for their continued support of the local PAL programs. For more information regarding donations or volunteer opportunities please contact Officer Noah Jones at (209) 827-0603.

To leave an anonymous crime tip call 209-827-7070 Ext. 288. If you have access to a computer and the internet you can also leave an anonymous tip at the Police Department’s web page at At the bottom of the “Contact” page simply click on the “report graffiti and other crime” link or visit the Merced Area Crime Stoppers by telephone at 1-855-725-2420, or at

Los Banos Police Department
5th St
Los Banos, CA 93635

Emergency: 9-1-1
Non-emergencies: 209-827-7070

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