Welcome to the FINAL Newsletter of 2018!
Merry Christmas! Happy Holidays! Frohe Weihnachten! Feliz Navidad! Bonnes Fetes! Buone Feste! Chuttiyo Ki Shubh Kamanayein!
Here’s what’s inside:
- An Anniversary Party!
- District Director Update
- Program Quality Director Update
- Club Growth Director Update
- Immediate Past District Director Update
Laurie Baker, DTM
LOVE OF LAUGHTER CELEBRATES 10 YEARS!
On Saturday, November 17, 2018, the Love of Laughter Toastmasters Club celebrated its 10 Year Anniversary!
Club Founder, Tom McFarlin, DTM was the Emcee of the evening. He talked about how the club came about. He learned about a humor club out in California and that was how our “Specialty” Club got started. The mission of the Love of Laughter Club is to learn how to write, deliver, and evaluate humor. Party planners Tom McFarlin, Laurie Baker, and Gail Rust put together a program filled with Humorous Speeches, Improv, and sharing LOL Memories. Most people said the highlight of the evening was the Joke Contest. Guests were encouraged to bring a joke to tell or pick from the many jokes that were available. The 1st place trophy went to Mat Schweiger, (Sue Kohut’s son-in-law). The 2nd prize ribbon went to Bill Bauer and the 3rd place ribbon went to Karl Herbst.
In attendance were many current and past District 35 Dignitaries, including Ed Thelen, DTM, District 35 Director, Kris Pool, DTM, Club Growth Director, and Kamal Soan, DTM, Public Relations Manager. We were delighted to see eight charter members in attendance: Judy Bauer, Rich Boomsliter, Ronda Borowski, Marjorie Lowe, Tom McFarlin, Debb Miller, Susan Popke, and Richard Seelig. (Tom McFarlin and Rich Boomsliter are still members of the club.)
Our 65 guests enjoyed a delicious all-you-can-eat fish fry and celebratory cake. Ed Thelen congratulated our club and presented Tom McFarlin with a corrected Founders Ribbon for the club banner. Ed grabbed one of the crazy hats that were used in the Improv skit to surprise the audience.
Over the past 10 years, the Love of Laughter club has conducted many events OUTSIDE their club meetings. These have included Comedy Comedy Mo Comedy, Laugh & Learn, and Humor Craft. Club members have also performed at State Fair and Festa Italiana. Most recently, the club conducted their own Humorous Speech Competition at Steinhafel’s in Waukesha. The top 3 winners, Kathy Glaser-Brown, Tim Griep, and Denise White, were our special guests at the 10th Anniversary party. Their dinners were paid for by the club and they delivered their extremely funny speeches.
Congratulations to all the members of the Love of Laughter Toastmasters Club for ten wild and wacky years! The club meets on the 1st and 3rd Thursday evening at 6:30pm at Ottawa University in Brookfield. Come check out our fun club!
It’s hard to believe that we are almost halfway through the 2018-2019 Toastmasters year! It certainly has been a year of highs (successful first virtual District Council meeting and District TLI) and lows (continuing to lose clubs and members). I’m one that likes to be optimistic and believe there is great opportunity ahead in the second half of the Toastmasters year.
Here are a few important opportunities as we look to the second half of the Toastmasters year:
Opportunities to grow membership. I’ve always felt winter was the best time of year to bring in new Toastmasters members. There are two factors behind this thought: 1) it is cold outside and people are more restricted to indoor activities, and 2) New Year’s Day starts out the second half of the year and self-improvement is often a New Year’s resolution and goal. In addition, those members that join now and renew for April 1 count as two membership payments which is one of the measurements looked at in the Distinguished District program. Now is the time to get your club’s PR machine in motion to show guests the value of Toastmasters and then put on a good show at club meetings to get guests hooked on the program!
Opportunities for education. Those of us that attended the District Toastmasters Leadership Institute (TLI) on December 1 are on a high from the great educational sessions offered. We strive to put on a top-notch program each year and were successful in this endeavor again this year. With some tweaks (because we can always improve), I think this will prove to be a good Fall Conference replacement event. The District will be piggybacking off some of these sessions at your Division led TLIs which will be held in January and February.
For the first time this Toastmasters year, we will be having some speech contests starting in the new year. It will be interesting to watch the conducting of our two hallmark speech contests, the Humorous and International Speech Contests, throughout the winter and spring culminating in our District contest in May at the Spring Convention. I am looking forward to a great Spring Convention in May in Green Bay; I know Gina Glover and her team are already working hard to make it a memorable event.
Opportunities for leadership. We are currently in the process of collecting nominations for District leaders for next year, some of which will be elected at the Spring Convention in May. In running for the elected District positions (District Director and Trio roles), I found the process helpful in setting the tone for the year I would serve in that particular role. In only a few months, the current leadership of the clubs will be looking for and electing its new slate of officers for the 2019-2020 Toastmasters year (also in May). There are leadership opportunities in some of the educational events I mentioned above. There is no other organization I am involved with that has the wealth of opportunities as found in Toastmasters.
With my feather staying firmly in my CAP (change, attitude, and Pathways), I look forward to seeing many of you and working with you in the second half of this Toastmasters year to make District 35 even more awesome! Cheers and Happy Holidays!
Contest Season begins in January 2019:
Clubs should hold their contests for the Humorous Speech contest and International Speech contest between January 2 and February 21, 2019.
Area contests will be held between February 22 and March 24.
Division contests will be held between March 25 and April 28.
District level Humorous Speech contest and the International Speech contest will be held at our Spring Convention May 10 and 11 at the Radisson Hotel & Casino in Green Bay. More details about the convention will be available in upcoming district newsletters.
Wishing you all a great holiday season and a blessed new year.
HOLIDAY GIFT GIVING
It’s December which means cold, snow, and gifts. Not that the cold and snow aren’t presents enough for anyone, but sometimes we need that personal touch on a gift.
This year, why not give the gift of Toastmasters? Treat a family member or colleague to a new membership with Toastmasters in your club (or another club that works best in their schedule). Let them experience all that Toastmasters has to offer for themselves, get involved, and then encourage them to continue their membership.
December also means the calendar year is winding down and the anticipation of a new year and a clean slate beckons. What changes do we want to make for ourselves? What changes do we want to incorporate in our Toastmasters clubs?
One option to think about for your club is participation in the District 35 PR contests for best social media and best club website. We’re looking for the best in layout, presentation, content, promotion of Toastmasters, channel presence, quality, and relevance. The criteria for these contests is available and posted on the district website at https://district35.org/public-relations-contest-2019/. First and second place will be awarded in each category at the Spring Convention in May 2019 in Green Bay. Why not make plans to improve your website and social media to meet the criteria and enter the PR contests. This is also a great opportunity to promote your club and welcome new guests and members.
Happy Holidays to all my friends and fellow Toastmasters! Be safe and have fun this holiday season.
Our District is implementing a storage system and governing process for retaining valuable information on running the District and key District events.
If you have documentation that you feel would be of value for the District to retain, please contact Keith Cumiskey, Immediate Past District Director, by January 15, 2019.
Examples of categories are Finance, Conference Planning, Marketing, District Success Plans, Training, Winter TLI planning, Public Relations, District Executive Committee (DEC) and District Council (DC) presentations and minutes, and Initiatives / Programs.