A Responsible Beverage Service and Sales Training at Ardmore Public Library Tuesday drew 20 participants from six local businesses.

The free class, sponsored locally by the Wichita Mountains Prevention Network, is designed by the Alcoholic Beverage Laws Enforcement Commission. The training is designed to provide managers, servers and clerks working at restaurants and convenience stores information about the state's alcohol laws, as well as the possible costs of failing to comply with the laws which can include criminal and civil liability, fines, and job loss.

"The training will also give employees confidence in identifying fake IDs, when to stop serving alcohol to a patron, and methods to deny sales," said Amanda Price, WMPN.

ABLE Agent T. Anthony was in Ardmore Tuesday to answer any questions during the training session.

"Recently, we have had a large interest in this class," Price said, adding the surge of interest may have resulted from compliance checks in October that led to citations and warnings at 15 local restaurants and convenience stores.

"El Chico, Virgies, Casa Romo, Red Dirt Brewhouse, Ardmore Discount Liquor, and First Down Phil's, all had employees present at this training," Price explained.

Following the training, Darla Andrews, general manager of El Chico in Ardmore, said, " In my opinion, the state should mandate this training, it was very helpful. It's important to have the training to go with a liquor license."

Zach Young, an El Chico server who also participated in the course, said the information he gained was invaluable.

"You can unknowingly commit a crime, and this class made me realize the responsibility when serving alcohol," he said.

In addition to Tuesday's group training session, Price said several other businesses have already scheduled private classes including Edamame Sushi Bar, Bar 115, and Chevy's.

"All of these venues are true assets to our community because they are building an informed and more responsible workforce," Price said, adding she and Gwyn Busby, also WMPN in Ardmore, are hoping more local businesses will seek training for their employees.

WMPN is located at 10 W. Main St, Suite 418. Call (580) 490-9197 Ext. 103.