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Friday, October 31, 2014

Attention PNW Optimist Clubs: Prepare for the Oratorical and CCDHH Contests early

The third quarter meeting for the PNW District - Optimist International will be held in British Columbia. This means that Optimist Clubs in the United States must accelerate their Oratorical and Communication Contests for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing in order to allow time to for the winning contestants to apply for a passport.

Oratorical Chair Bill Garcia and CCDHH Chair (US) Myrna Harris have requested that all regional contests be held in early March. The exact dates will be set by the lieutenant governor in your state or province, but in order to be ready, the district recommends that Optimist Club level contests be held early accordingly. 

The Oratorical Contest takes place between January and March. The official topic for 2014-15 is "How my optimism will help me press on to 'greater achievements of the future.'" Download the entry form.

The Communication Contest for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing takes place between January and March. The official topic for 2014-15 is "How my optimism will help me press on to 'greater achievements of the future.'" Download the entry form.

Contact the District Chairpersons here.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Notes from the First Quarter PNW District - Optimist International meeting

pnw district optimist clubs costume party

Sixty-five or more Optimist Club members came together on October 24-25 to share stories and learn new procedures for the 2014-2015 administrative year. This marked a little increase in attendance from the last district gathering. No matter the size of the group, the enthusiasm and positivity are always a highlight and this meeting was high on both. Celebrating the Halloween season, these goofy do-gooders were dressed in style.

During the the course of the weekend we learned Governor Dick Disney's goals. He plans to attend all PNW District Optimist Clubs during the year and he will encourage them all to reach the Honor Club distinction. By achieving Honor Club, each club will replace lost members, serve their community with projects and programs and be financially solvent. Honor Club is an honorable goal.

The group heard from Linda Vaught Jackson about social media and how to use the Optimist International and PNW District websites to promote their Optimist Clubs to both internal and external audiences. Inspired by a presentation she heard given by James Patrick Schmidt at the Illinois District meeting earlier in the month, she shared ideas to develop a target market and to always be promoting your Optimist Club.

Attendees also drew inspiration from Optimist International President Ken Garner as they watched his moving speech from the Optimist International Convention.

Essay Contest deadlines were shared with the reminder that all winning club essays must be turned in to Chairperson Robin Stanhope by February 28, 2014.

The CCDHH and Optimist Oratorical Contest chairpersons informed the group that the third quarter conference was scheduled to be held in British Columbia in May, 2014. To allow lead time for US contestants to apply for and receive their passports, the Regional Contests will be held early in March 2014. Clubs must therefore hold their Optimist Club contests by February 28, 2014 as well.

The cost to enter all scholarship contests is $50 per contestant advancing to the second level of competition be it zone, regional or district. This amount is paid by the sponsoring Optimist Club.

Among other activities, the district budget was approved, growth incentives were discussed and immediate past governor Fred Wallace was recognized by Governor Dick for his service.

Inspired to do even more in their communities, the group adjourned to the second quarter regional forums to be held in February and March 2015.

For more information about all district activities, promotions, programs and projects, please contact your Lt. Governor at this link or a committee chairperson at this link.

If you have any questions about using the websites, please leave Linda Vaught Jackson a note here or contact Optimist International directly.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

From Honor Club to the best Optimist Club of the Year

optimist club of year
Governor Dick Disney has set a goal for the district. He wants every Optimist Club to end the 2014-2015 year as an Honor Club.

Earning Honor Club status means that an Optimist Club is doing all that it can do to make sure that it is relevant to its community and that it will continue to perform service projects long after the current members are there to perform them. In business lingo, we might call it a succession plan; an operational plan that allows the business to be handed over from one generation to the next.

The requirements for Honor Club are very basic:
  • Complete at least three service projects a year (submit President's Pride Report)
  • Recognize a Club member or local community individual
  • Grow Club by net plus 1
  • Be current on District and OI dues
The Honor Club requirements have changed a little over the years. Clubs once had to end with a net five members, among other things; but now the simplified plan should propel everyone to succeed. Noting that the steps didn't seem all that challenging, members of a new Optimist Club asked International President Ken Garner what they needed to do to be the best, the #1 Optimist Club in all of Optimist International. And International President Ken responded by creating a new program for 2014-2015: Optimist Club of the Year. 

The Optimist Club of the Year award will be presented annually to the most outstanding club in each region based on the following criteria: 
  • Service Clubs sponsored by the Club: 30 points
  • Member Development Programs a year: 25 points
  • Club Growth and Increased Community Awareness Campaigns: 25 points
  • Increased Volunteer Member Base: 10 points
  • New Community Efforts: 10 points 
The regional superstars will be entered in the Overall Optimist Club of the Year contest. Find out more about how your club can enter and earn prizes that include convention registration, airline tickets, and more at this link: Optimist Club of the Year.  

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Who am I?

During the first quarter meeting, the PNW District revisited the Optimist International Convention by showing the moving speech made by Optimist International President Ken Garner.

Ken Garner is an Optimist. Who am I? Who are you? Find the answer when you watch this video.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Optimist Club members are superheroes

It is my learned opinion that Optimist Club members are superheroes. We stand on guard in our communities to protect and serve in so many ways. Among other things,we host programs that involve and mentor children, perform beautification projects, and hold fundraising events, just so we can give our money away to others so that they too can do more to advance themselves and the place where we call home. We may not wear a cape or hide behind a mask, but as a group, our superpowers are immense.

Typically once a year at the first quarter district meeting, Optimist Superheroes dress up and share their fun-loving spirit at a costume party. This year, that party will take place Friday, October 24, 2014 at opening ceremonies for the district quarterly in Hood River, Oregon. Don't be a party pooper - be creative and join the fun.  See you there!


Sunday, October 12, 2014

Calling all Optimists to Hood River

The First Quarter Meeting is fast approaching.

Your Optimist Club president and others will benefit from attending the motivational start of the new Optimist Club administrative year. It's the best way to learn the dates for the International programs and share promotional tools for all activities that your Optimist Club does throughout the year.

If you haven't already, please register now.

We look forward to seeing you in Hood River, October 24-25, 2014.

Click here to download the program.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Optimist Club Essay Contest Timeline

pnw district optimist clubs essay contestIs your Optimist Club working on the Optimist International Essay Contest? I hope so! It's one of the great opportunities that all Optimist Clubs have to interact with students in a way that lets them earn money for college.

This week Robin Stanhope, PNW District Chair of the Optimist International Essay Contest wrote in to share the following note:

Hello everyone, welcome to the new Optimist Year. 
I want to share information with you for the Essay Contest this year. This contest gives youth the opportunity to write about their opinions regarding themselves and the world around them. This year's topic is "Optimism Should be a Priority." The contest is open to students under the age of 19 and have not graduated from high school or the equivalent, regardless of the Contest date. United States students attending school on military installations outside the U.S. are also allowed to participate in the contest. These students are eligible to enter in their last U.S. home of record.

Please submit your winners to me for the District Competition no later than February 28, 2015. If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact me. I have sent out information to Club Presidents, Lt governors and Club Chairs in reference to the Essay Contest. If you did not receive the information please contact me at rastanhope@gmail.com
Timeline for Essay Contest
Feb 28, 2015 Clubs and/or Regional have winners submitted to District
Apr 15, 2015 District have winners submitted to OI
Thank you,
Robin Stanhope
PNW District Essay Chair

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

The Real FRI - END of Y-O-U-T-H: 2014-15 in Action

PNW District OptimistWe as active "Optimist" members of the Pacific Northwest District are all enthusiastically ready to launch another year of activities designed to meet our individual community needs focusing on "Bringing Out the Best in Our YOUTH".

Annually the October beginning for our clubs and district is a time to complete an assessment by completing the Annual Club Planning Conference Report by the incoming or new President and Board of Directors. Lt. Governors will ensure that each club completes and submits them on time.

I'm looking forward to all clubs & PNW District meeting or surpassing the following goals stated earlier:
  • Expand Youth Activities by at least one new activity and increase the number of youth served. 
  • As a minimum each and every club in each of our four zones achieve at least Honor Club status. Let's be the first district to achieve 100% Honor Clubs status. We can be the first! Check the PNW District website at least weekly to keep current. 
  • Above all, HAVE FUN and MORE FUN through service to our Youth and Member Fellowship involving ALL our members. 

Please encourage at least one representative from each club to attend the First Quarter Conference in Hood River, Oregon on 24 -25 October 2014. Log on to www.pnwdistrictoptimist.org to register and make hotel reservations.

This year's 1st Quarter Conference begins with an opening session change. Everyone is encouraged to have FUN by ENTERING OUR HOLLOWEEN COSTUME CONTEST. Start now putting a winning costume!!! Enjoy and have FUN!! See you all there for business, information and fun.

~Governor Dick Disney

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