NORFOLK - Survivors of drug and alcohol abuse are not letting their difficult pasts hold them down, meeting in Northeast Nebraska to celebrate a substance free life.

Dozens of people gathered at the Sunrise Place in Norfolk Friday afternoon for the 12th Annual Recovery Rally.

Sunrise Place, Behavioral Health Specialists and members of the community celebrated the night with food, inspiring speakers and fellowship in conjunction with National Recovery Month.

Attendee Dillon Robinson says events like this help keep your mind off addiction.

“Community events like this are so important in sobriety. To be able to keep doing stuff that doesn’t involve alcohol, that doesn’t involve drugs. It’s just something to keep your mind off of it. Even if it’s for an hour, two hours at a time.” Robinson says.

Executive Director of Behavioral Health Specialists Inc. Jay Fleecs says people enjoy coming to the event because it's voluntary and creates a welcoming environment.

“They want to be here, instead of have to be here, so you see a lot of smiles. You see a lot of people talking back and forth. It doesn’t matter who they are, there’s a lot of conversation. So just the happiness of the their recovery is fulfilling to me. Fleecs says.

The event also included honoring those who recovered at the Sunrise Place, live music and a friendly place to meet others going through the same experiences.