Oratorical contestants move on to district regional competition


TROY — On Monday, March 6, the Troy Noon Optimist Club held its annual Oratorical Contest at Troy First United Methodist Church’s First Place Christian Center located at 16 W. Franklin St., Troy.

11 participants competed by presenting four to five-minute memorized talks centered around the theme, “Discovering the Optimism within Me.” A three-judge panel judged the participants for the content of their speeches, their poise, their delivery and presentation, and their overall effectiveness, and then selected the top three for cash prizes.

Optimist Club member, retired Troy schoolteacher and long-time organizer of the event Pat Morris has been challenging young participants like these to prepare their talks with a spirit of excellence for many years now, and this year was no exception. Troy teachers Angie Clouser and Jen Karnehm have also devoted many, many hours of their own time over the years to help prep Oratorical Contest participants, and they did so again this year.

This year’s first-place Oratorical Contest competitor was Troy eighth-grader Caroline Rohlfs whose parents are Brad and Natalie Rohlfs, of Troy. Finishing in second-place was Troy High School senior Savannah Swanson whose parents are Kevin and Marion Swanson, also of Troy. And this year’s third-place competitor was seventh-grader Kipton Ward whose father is Mark Ward, also of Troy.

Following this, on Saturday, March 18, also at First Place in Troy, the Troy Noon Optimist Club’s top two Oratorical Contest competitors, Rohlfs and Swanson, moved on to compete in the Optimist Zone Oratorical Contest where they once again finished first and second. Now they will move on to compete in the District Regional Oratorical Contest on Saturday, April 15, at the Salvation Army Lima Corps Community Center in Lima.

The Troy Noon Optimist Club extends its warmest congratulations and thanks to these young ladies as well as to all the other young people who competed so bravely and well.

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