Yorktown hosts a District Forensics Competition every year. Each year they are always looking for “volunteer” judges who are stipend $50 for participating for the night. Therefore, when I received an email from Dr. Marquerite Rippy I realized I could not turn the opportunity down. One, I enjoy being involved and then two, it’s an easy way to make $50. Dr. Rippy was great and gave me a ride to Yorktown High School. (A Side note: Her office looks amazing with all her noir movie posters.) Since I never grew up in the area, I had no idea what I was in for that night. My high school never hosted such competitions, and if they did then I was not interested in them.
When I arrived at the high school, I was a little nervous to what was in store for the night. A handful of other judges arrived to a room where we held a meeting. I learned that there were two hours and the competition would end sometime between 7:00-7:30 meaning I could make it back to Marymount to watch Archer with my friends. The first round involved me viewing the students who were participating in the storytelling portion. To be honest, that was the initial reason to why I was interested in the competition besides the money. Since I’m interested in children’s publishing and Air and Space’s storytime, I was excited about their choices. Most of the students picked the usual selections such as Dr. Seuss, fairy tales and Charlotte’s Web. All were titles that I do love though. One of the girls even recited an old Nordic folktale.
The competition provided a wonderful dinner for all the judges before the next round. For me, I needed to listen to the original speeches by students. My judge partner told he used to go to the same high school and participated in the same competition. He was always interested in Original Oratory until he learned it’s a yearlong process to work on one speech. I had no idea. I was impressed by the effort of the students.
It was a lovely night overall. I had a lot of fun meeting judges from all over the Arlington area, and meeting high school students. I would suggest people to take a look into the competition when the chance takes up again.