Summit Lake Dillon Optimists Club awards $600 to local students in oratorical contest |

Summit Lake Dillon Optimists Club awards $600 to local students in oratorical contest

Alli Langley
The Denver Zoo visited students at Summit Cove Elementary Friday, Jan. 16. Students got up close with a snake, an opossum and other animals.
Courtesy Summit School District |


Monday, Jan. 19

The Peak School, Martin Luther King Jr. day of service

Tuesday, Jan. 20

Summit Middle School, girls basketball vs. Lake County, 4 p.m.

Wednesday, Jan. 21

The Peak School, high school opportunities panel discussion, 6-8 p.m.

Thursday, Jan. 22

Summit High School, girls basketball vs. Glenwood, 5:30 p.m.

Summit High School, boys basketball vs. Glenwood, 7 p.m.

Saturday, Jan. 24

Summit Middle School, girls basketball tournament

Claire Davidson opened her speech about optimism with an analogy.

A kid tossed himself a baseball and tried to hit it, only to swing and miss. The kid remained positive, saying to himself, “I am the greatest baseball player in the world!”

After a couple tries, his refrain and his outlook changed.

“I am the greatest baseball pitcher in the world!” he said.

Davidson, 16, then spoke about how optimism has helped her in theater and with other personal struggles and goals, and she ended her speech with a Monty Python quote.

Her essay earned her first place and $300 in the Summit Lake Dillon Optimists Club oratorical contest on Monday, Jan. 12.

Second place and the $200 prize went to 14-year-old Sarah Burke, and her 17-year-old sister Emily claimed third place and $100.

The club, which was established more than 40 years ago as a local branch of Optimist International, held the annual oratorical competition again after a couple-year hiatus.

Fourteen middle and high school students competed, and the winners may go on to further competition and the opportunity to win a $2,500 scholarship, said Della Crone, a club member.

Of the middle school students, Calliope Cartwright, 13, won first place, Sam Burke, 11, earned second and Elsa Bates, 12, took third.

Judges scored the students’ responses to the topic “How my optimism will help me press on to greater achievements in the future” on their poise, content, delivery, presentation and overall effectiveness.

Crone stressed that the kids worked hard on their essays and congratulated them for having the courage to present.

The prize winners will give their speeches and be treated to breakfast at the next Optimist Club meeting Wednesday, Feb. 4, at the Summit County Community and Senior Center at the County Commons in Frisco at 7:30 a.m.

Rotary offers $5,000 ethics scholarship

Summit high school students are encouraged to apply for an ethics scholarship presented through the Rotary Club of Summit County.

The $5,000 scholarship aims to reward a junior or senior who applies Rotary’s guiding principles of the “Four Way Test” to his or her life and illustrates this effectively through a written essay.

The test suggests people ask themselves the following four questions and apply them to what they think, say and do: Is it the truth? Is it fair to all concerned? Will it build goodwill and better friendships? Will it be beneficial?

The award is presented in partnership with the Better Business Bureau Center for Character Ethics and Rotary districts 5440, 5450 and 5470, which serve northern Colorado and Wyoming.

Essays should be 1,500 to 2,000 words (six to eight pages double-spaced) and must be submitted electronically with the rest of the application to by Feb. 2.

For more information, contact Maggie Dew, Rotary vocational services, at 970-393-2536 or

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