Niagara forensics team at Golden K meeting

By JOAN JOUPPI

For The Daily News

KINGSFORD – A day of mild weather welcomed everyone as Golden K’ers greeted each other Monday morning. Pauline Werner played the piano and Margaret Trudell directed the singing. The group tried out oldies but goodies that they haven’t sung in awhile such as, “Try to Remember,” “Up Lazy River,” and “Via Con Dios.”

Golden K visitors, students from the Niagara Forensics team, joined the sing-a-long as they sung “Wedding Bells Are Breaking Up That Old Gang Of Mine,” and “When The Red-Red Robin Comes Bobbing Along.” The halls were full of the sound of music at the Presbyterian Church.

Gilbert Engel, chairman of the month, led the meeting’s Pledge of Allegiance and “God Bless America.” The welcome song was sung for the Niagara High School forensics team.

Lois Outcelt gave the thought for the day: “What a quiet world this would be, if, out of all the birds, only the best would sing.”

Reading the happy dollars revealed the following: Richard Walsh is happy to be here; Margaret Trudell is happy Bill is able to see better and hope it continues; Ron Jouppi said he would be happier if he won the Pot of Gold; Happiness cannot be traveled to, owned, earned, or worn. It’s the spiritual experience of living every minute with love, grace and gratitude (by Denis Waitley) was shared by Paul Jacobs, and the older we get, the fewer things seem worth waiting in line (mostly because we forgot why we got in line in the first place).

The Pot-O-Gold was won by Leon Gospodarek. Better luck next time, Ron.

Louis Outcelt, program chairperson, introduced the Niagara High School Forensics Team. Did you know that one out of four students at Niagara High School participates in competitive public speaking? Forensics teams are made of students who compete in categories such as demonstrative speaking, extemporaneous speaking, farrago, four minute speaking, group interpretive reading, moments in history, oratory, play acting, poetry reading, prose reading, public address, radio speaking, solo acting, special occasion speech, and story telling.

The program began with Wyatt Aderman and Tom Sielaff introducing each performer and their category of speech. First up was Hope Lantagne, reading prose literature. Prose literature is developed around a selection from a short story, novel, drama, essay, or other non-fiction work that centers on a specific theme or emotion. Today we heard about Reverdy and her trials as a younger sister reaching for love and acceptance from her mother. Only to find out she that her actions were supportive of her older sister as she played the piano in the midst of conflict between her mother and that older sister. The presentation left the audience to form conclusions and process thoughts about what happened. My thought was a reflection of how truly inspiring it is to know that whatever we do, our own gain is not as important as the benefit to others.

Next, Becca Rock, Hannah Waugen, Val Massicotte, Marah Harvath, and Maison Huth presented a group interpretation. The title, “Strange” was a script about a dog and how he came to get the name Strange. Lots of humor and adventure was put into this piece about the dog’s character including one adventure when he climbed on the roof and was found peeping in on someone in the bathtub, only to have the added twist when the husband was mistaken as the dog. It’s quite a story and presented in a manner that keeps your attention while you picture all of the events happening.

Solo acting by Katie Steeno was viewed as she demonstrated motion and speech in revealing her message about going through hardships and allowing people into your life. The discovery of true friends and support from others shined through this presentation about a young person with cancer and the efforts of others made to help keep her from feeling alone.

Another group interpretation was given by Trevor Lantagne, Brett Pultz, Adam Parent, Jacob Oratch and Domenic Spigarelli filling in for Nate Moll. It kept the audience entertained with the adventures of a student who waited till the last minute to complete a science project was something many of us could relate to experiencing. Not only did this piece point out the reality that these projects have become routine, but it also pointed out what can be explored through doing them. It was great to discover that the hypotheses should match the conclusion even when it is simply to move water and make waves, or use a hodgepodge of items to finally squeeze toothpaste from a tube, and especially when the hypotheses was to, well, turn the toaster into a flaming object-which became a success after sticking in pop-tarts and holding down the on button. All in the name of science, “Weird Science;” awesome weird science.

This year more than 8,000 Wisconsin high school students participated in the forensic season. Each student engaged in six various competitive rounds of speaking at the sub-district and district levels with the hope of gaining enough points to participate at state.

The University of Wisconsin-Madison campus hosts the state forensic competitions and has been the host campus since 1889 (making this association the oldest of its kind in the United States).

Ben Determan will be the program chairperson on April 7. He will have Bill Rice presenting a program on conservation. The group invites everyone to join them Monday morning from 10 a.m. to 11 a,m, at the Presbyterian Church in Kingsford. The Golden Throats will sing April 9, at ManorCare.