Optimist Club of Coronado

Coronado Optimist Club Start 45th Year as Friends of Youth

“Press on to greater achievements in the future”, part of the Optimist Creed, is particularly applicable to the Optimist Club of Coronado. This special club has been doing just that since its founding in 1970. The club is somewhat unique in the entire Optimist International organization. It has had a different member serve as president every year since its’ founding in 1970 – no repeats. To be asked is an honor; to serve is not only a lot of work, but is also personally satisfying. We wish President Bruce Johnson all the best as this remarkable club continues its outstanding service to the youth of Coronado.   This vibrant club, 148 members strong, wishes to publicly thank Mark Blumenthal for his leadership, energy, creativity and great sense of humor.

A capable Board of Directors assisting Bruce for the coming year are: Vice Presidents Mike Napolitano and John Watson, Directors Ken Ireland, Cynthia Kosciuczyk, Cote Perkins, Lynz Arendsee, Jim Zoll, Dennis Dorman, Secretary Clyde Arends, Treasurer Clint Coneway, President-Elect Diana Drummey, and Past President Mark Blumenthal. We thank them for their willingness to serve.

Photo: (l-r) Outgoing President Mark Blumenthal receives ceremonial gavel from Incoming President Bruce Johnson

CHS NJROTC receives Distinguished Unit Award

Coronado HS Navy Jr. NJROTC ‘Islander Company’ Receives Distinguished Unit Award for 7th Consecutive Year

Photo: (L-R) ROTC Cadets Angela Ahern, Jacob Blauser, Tess Woodson

Captain Ken Ireland USN (Ret) spoke to the Optimist Club about the goals and accomplishments of Islander Company.   118 students are cadets in the program which focuses on developing leadership skills, academic excellence, physical fitness and teamwork. Three representatives of the unit, Cadets Angela Ahern, Jacob Blauser, and Tess Woodson, also spoke about the opportunities, enjoyment and satisfaction each has experienced as a cadet. Post high school military service in the military is not a focus of the program; however, some of the cadets do opt to enlist in the military or gain a commission. In the ten years the program has been at CHS many cadets have received service academy appointments or ROTC scholarships. Islander Company participates with Coronado Optimists in the strand clean-up. The Optimists salute the performance of this outstanding unit!

Optimist Youth Appreciation Award Winners for 2014

Optimist Youth Appreciation Award Winners for 2014 - May 1, 2014

Coronado High School

“A Joy to Have in Class!”   These words by CHS Assistant Principal Steve Abbot accurately describe each of the students who received these prestigious awards given annually by the Optimist Club of Coronado. The awards are presented to one boy and one girl in each class who best exemplify those qualities expressed in the Optimist Creed. Concern for others, cheerfulness and doing your best in all phases of school life are but a few of the character traits of these outstanding students. The Optimists salute them, their parents and teachers. You make Coronado proud!

Palm Academy

Principal Kevin Nichols spoke about the optimistic attributes of Frankie Slattery and Brooke Anns, the students nominated for the awards, with equal appreciation for what they brought to the class. Of particular note were the recent challenges faced by Frankie, who was injured in a bike-auto accident in Coronado. His fighting spirit has been instrumental in a recovery process that is proceeding well.  An unusual happening took place at the Optimist meeting – Frankie’s Fan Club came to also recognize him! They, along with Frankie’s mom, cheered loudly when Frankie received his award. It was a moment to remember.

Principal Kevin Nichols, Award Winners Frankie Slattery & Brooke Anns, and Counselor Afsaneh Safaie

Frankie’s Fan Club!

Optimist Oratorical Winners Advance in Competition

Young and talented orators Eugenia Dominguez and Max Kunes were First Place Winners in the Optimist Oratorical Contest and will compete at the next level with the winners from four other Optimist Clubs in San Diego. The Second Place Winner was Samantha Russell; Third Place Winner was Natalya Gomez. The four winners are students at Sacred Heart Parrish School. Other students who competed were: Ariana Martin, Sofia Rubio, Ivana Letayf, Carolina Salome, Gabriella Ryan and Adelaide McCargill.

This year’s topic was, ‘How My Passions Impact the World’. Ten students accepted the challenge to participate and all the orators excelled in their prepared speeches. Each speech was between 4 and 5 minutes long and points were awarded for content, delivery, poise and overall effectiveness. It was evident that extensive preparation had been done by all the contestants. The three judges had a most difficult time because of the high quality of every speech given.

To follow one’s passion in life is one of the keys to not only happiness but also to making great contributions to fellow human beings in the process. The passions of which these fine students spoke included; helping others in need, education and teaching, leadership and public speaking, technology to help advance the human race, music and singing, photography, physical and mental health. The importance of striving, accepting challenges as opportunities as well as integrity, empathy, kindness and character were addressed in all the speeches. The parents and teachers in the room, hearing and witnessing the positive outlook of these outstanding students, were both proud and inspired.

The Optimists want to thank the students, parents and teachers who all participated in this wonderful event this year. These Coronado students are remarkable. We are privileged to have them in our community.

Optimist Youth Leaders Represent Coronado in Baltimore

Justin and Victoria Rose Meek represented fellow students at the Junior Optimist Organization International at the national convention in Baltimore, MD.  The purpose of the convention was to learn of the activities and successful project of other young Optimists around the world and to meet and share experiences.  Both reported having a fantastic time and returned to Coronado with renewed energy as well as ideas to present to the CHS Octagon and CMS Jr. Optimist Clubs for consideration.

Justin is President of the Octagon Club, a club having a banner year, and Victoria Rose is a member of the very vibrant Jr. Optimist Club.  They are the son and daughter of Roger and Laura Lynn Meek of Coronado.  Laura Lynn is an active member of the Optimist Club of Coronado.

Another Successful Sports Fiesta!

Another great event was held at Sunset Park on Saturday and Sunday.   The 10KRun registered 205 participants, the 1 mile swim was a small but hearty group of 46 swimmers in 60 degree water, and on Sunday, the Triathlon has 129 participants.  The Diving competition had 35 divers and 12 teams of synchronized divers.  Results are posted on the Home page of published a nice article about the event, too.  ‘Coronado Should Bid for Next Olympics,’ Says Londoner Post-Swim

Coronado High School Youth Appreciation

Today, our meeting was at full capacity at the Coronado Community Center.  It was Youth Appreciation for Coronado High School students.  Students were chosen by the teachers based on the embodiment of the Optimist Creed.

Principal Karl Mueller and Vice Principal Jenny Moore introduced their wonderful band of young people who, along with proud parents. Lynz Arendsee in her brightest green handed gifts to the teens as they were announced. Freshmen Jaclyn Bunker & Matt Gillingham, Sophomores Baylie Zimmerman & Justin Meek, Juniors Mary Grace Braun & Willis Taylor, and Seniors Kyana Van Houten & Patrick Erskin were picked out by their teachers as living the Optimist Creed in their school life.  Kevin Nicholls, Principal of the Palm Academy, brought faculty member Kim Strassburger to introduce Aubrey Brewer and Jacob Dawley who were the awardees from that side of D Ave.

Both Karl and Kevin spoke nice words about the relationship between the school and our yellow clad members. We thanked the parents for sending us their fine children, and then, before we knew it, they were off to school.  Congratulations to all these incredible young people, and their parents and educators, too!

Here are the Left to right identification with grade levels: Back row: CHS Principal Karl Mueller,Jaclyn Bunker(9), Baylie Zimmerman (10), Mary Grace Braun (11), Kyana Van Houten (12), VP Jenny Moore. Front row: Matt Gillingham (9), Justin Meek (10), Willis Taylor (11), Patrick Erskine (12)
Palm Academy Principal Kevin Nichols, Jacob Dawley, Aubrey Brewer, and Faculty Member Kim Strassburger.

Optimist Youth Leaders Putting Ideas Into Action

The optimism and creative spirit of both the CHS Octagon and the CMS Jr. Optimist clubs are outstanding.  Fellow members have experienced the satisfaction that results from volunteering time and talent to worthwhile projects.  Successful projects require planning, promotion and work; the planning and promotion result from good leadership by students who lead in a variety of capacities; the work requires cheerful participation by all members.

In addition to superb student leaders, the Octagon and Jr. Optimist clubs are most fortunate to have excellent adult supervisors.  Supporting the Octagon Club are Teacher/Advisor Ian Silverman and Optimist Liaison Laura Lynn Meek . Teacher/Advisor Jennifer Landry supports the Jr. Optimist Club. Laura Lynn and Jennifer are also members of the Optimist Club.  The Coronado Optimists are proud to sponsor these outstanding clubs and salute their good works.

Optimist Essay Contest

Photo (L-R):   Winners Andrew Morris & Claire Purvis, Optimist Sally Wilson  (Luke McCue not avail for photo)

The Optimist Essay Contest, under the leadership of Sally Wilson, again produced outstanding essays from students in Coronado. The essay topic was: “How My Positive Outlook Benefits My Community”. Winners this year were: 1st Place: Claire Purvis; 2nd Place: Luke McCue; 3rdPlace: Andrew Morris.

Claire wrote about how her life-long health problems have inspired her to work toward easing the burdens of other children with similar difficulties. She and a friend, who also suffers in her young age, have several projects to give hope to children at the hospital where they have been treated. Claire wrote that she has missed out on many things, but she has not been let down. Her love enhances the lives of other whose problems Claire well understands.

Luke McCue wrote about how being part of a military family and having the opportunity to visit 16 countries has made him realize he is a citizen of the world.  It has taught him he can help make a difference by bringing people together to accomplish things for the greater good.  Last summer he had the opportunity to be a member of a team that built an elementary school from the ground up in Ghana.  Through this experience as well as others he has had in other countries, and with his role as an elected member of his student body association, he brings people together, gets them enthusiastic about working together and accomplishes tasks none of them could have completed alone.

Andrew wrote about using his talent on the piano to ease the loneliness of older folks in an assisted living home, many who suffer with dementia and severe health problems. Andrew brightens their days with his songs. He wrote that, as his music floats down and around the corners of the halls of the home, people have their nurses wheel them to the sound of music in the room where he plays. Older people sing or hum songs they remember. He enjoys making their day a little brighter.

The three winners represented not only themselves but also all the students who entered the contest, teachers and families who provide support and encouragement.  The Optimist Club thanks you all!

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