Party Smarter:
Plan - Prepare - Pace

Are you getting the most out of your nights out? Sometimes drinking too much can get in the way of having fun. Everybody knows not to drink and drive – but there is more you might want to know to help you Party Smarter. Don’t miss the night and the fun – take some simple steps to “party smarter” whether you’re out at bars, clubs, restaurants, or at a friends’ home or in your home.

Plan - Where are you going? Who are you going with? How are you getting home?

Prepare - Eat, drink water, and make sure you take just enough money to have a good time. Leave the credit cards at home!

Pace – Limit how much you drink in a night.

Why Should You Care?

Well, in addition to having to suffer through a hangover, having no money, cleaning up vomit, repairing friendships or much worse – sometimes the amount you drink can be a signal that you may have a problem with alcohol. If you want to learn more, keep reading.

Does Size Matter?

When it comes to alcoholic drinks, the size and amount of alcohol varies widely. And if you’ve decided that you are only going to drink a certain number of drinks in an evening, you should know what “one drink” means! One beer can is generally 5% alcohol – so one “drink” would be one 12 ounce beer. One shot of liquor – 1.5 oz – is equal to one drink. One mixed drink, assuming it has just one shot of liquor, is also 1.5 oz of alcohol and is equal to one drink. The chart below may help.

Drinks are not equal chart

Want More?

There are lots of resources to help you party smarter, stay safe, and enjoy your friends. Here are just a few:

Rethinking Drinking

Do you enjoy a drink now and then? Many of us do, often when socializing with friends and family. Drinking can be beneficial or harmful, depending on your age and health status, and, of course, how much you drink.

For anyone who drinks, this site offers valuable, research-based information. What do you think about taking a look at your drinking habits and how they may affect your health? Rethinking Drinking can help you get started.


Is drinking alcohol harming my health now, or will it be harmful to me later in life? Should I stop drinking alcohol? Am I a binge drinker? Most adults who drink alcoholic beverages (beer, wine, or liquor) consume safe and healthy amounts. For others, unsafe drinking patterns increase their risk for injury, illness or future alcohol problems. And, for 1 in 13 American adults, alcohol abuse or alcohol dependence (alcoholism) causes substantial harm to their health and disruption in their lives.
If you consume alcoholic beverages, it's important to know whether your drinking patterns are safe, risky or harmful. Answering these questions will take only a few minutes, and will generate personalized results based on your age, gender and drinking patterns. Your responses are completely confidential and anonymous.

Maine Office of Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services

If you want printed information or Maine-specific resources for counseling and treatment, contact the Office of Substance Abuse Information & Resource Center
Open Monday through Friday 8:00 am to 5:00 pm
Phone: 1-800-499-0027 : TTY users call Maine relay: 711