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Sunday, April 5, 2009

Dynasty of public speakers at the Vancouver Optimist Oratorical Contest

The Optimist Oratorical Contest is by far my favorite Optimist International program because it emphasizes the importance of communication. The participants learn to gather their thoughts, write them down and then present them in a manner that is engaging and informative. All the while Optimist members, parents, and other community members get the opportunity to hear what kids think and discover how they process their thoughts. We also get to marvel at their ability to stand in front of a crowd of strangers and improve every time they deliver their message. And some come back every year, improving and impressing us every time.

In Vancouver, Washington there is a family of public speakers, the Jones'. Last year we met Clareesa Jones as she took first place at the District Optimist Oratorical Contest. This year, three more Jones girls participated in the Vancouver, WA Optimist Club Contest. Shown left to right are Larry Smith (judge), Sonia Jones (1st Place), Ariel Jones (2nd Place), Lynn Helsel (judge), Merci Jones (4th Place), Claudia Dalton (judge), and Max Hsaio (3rd place).


The Zone contest will be held on April 11 at 10 am. Watch streaming video of the Optimist Oratorical Contest here.