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SASEBO NAVAL BASE, Japan — It pays to be a designated driver.

The ongoing Designated Driver Program operated by Sasebo Naval Base’s Morale, Welfare and Recreation department holds drawings each week for prizes such as DVDs, stereo equipment, T-shirts and sports products. But now the program is upping the ante: Designated drivers have a chance on Jan. 15 to win a laptop computer valued at $1,250.

The program operates in MWR facilities that serve alcoholic beverages, including the Galaxies Club, Spare Time Recreation Center’s 11th Frame Snack Bar, Hario Pub, Harbor View Club and HOG Heaven.

“All a person has to do is tell a server that they want to be a designated driver,” said MWR marketing director Allison Foo. Anyone with a status-of-forces-agreement identification card and a driver’s license can participate, she said, and participants get free nonalcoholic drinks throughout their visit and a wristband identifying them as a designated driver.

Designated drivers also are given an entry form for the weekly drawings, as well as for the grand prize contest in January. Only one entry per day/night is allowed and it must be signed by a server and dated.

“We have this program in hopes of preventing accidents that could occur when someone who’s been drinking tries to drive,” Foo said. The drawing for the laptop, donated by Sasebo’s United Service Organizations and AT&T, serves “as a special incentive to attract more designated drivers” and to educate sailors about the program, she added.

Call Foo at DSN 252-3069 for more information.

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