Weather Forecast


2 from Farmington attend anti-smoking event

A pair of incoming Farmington High School students spent three days last week protesting what they see as the tobacco industry's continued success attracting young smokers.

Incoming FHS sophomores Mariah Geiger and Elizabeth Roorda were among more than 100 Minnesota teens who gathered June 13 in St. Paul's Mears Park to hang 1,200 T-shirts to represent the 1,200 people who die each day in the United States from tobacco and secondhand smoke. The event, part of a three-day summit organized by Catalyst, a group of teens that speaks out on public health issues.

Geiger has served on Catalyst's youth leadership board since the group formed about a year ago.

"It really excited me that I could actually do something about the big problem of tobacco in this world," Geiger said. "I'm really passionate about having something be done with that."

The June 13 event was the culmination of a three-day summit in which Catalyst spread the word about the tobacco industry and what the group sees as efforts to target teens.

"This event is very important to me," said Geiger. "1,200 is not just a number; it is actual people every single day in the United States that could still be here if not for the tobacco industry. I think it is very important to get the word out about this issue."