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Legion seeks entries for oratorical contest

POSTED: October 24, 2013 12:23 a.m.

The American Legion is looking for participants in the 2014 oratorical contest.

John Arant, program organizer for Cumming Post 307, said the contest is open to any high school student younger than 20.

They can attend any public or private school, or be home schooled.  

Arant said Forsyth County students have fared well in the contest over the years, with many going to state and national level competition.

“Last year, our [local] winner ended up third in the state and won about $3,500 for her college tuition,” he said. “Best of all, in 2007, a local home-schooler won the state and got second nationally in Indianapolis and won about $21,000 in scholarship money.

“So it pays to know the Constitution.”

Each contestant must deliver an eight- to 10-minute prepared speech, using some aspect of the Constitution of the United States. They should place emphasis on the duties and obligations of a citizen to the government.

“Their speech should be written by Thanksgiving and memorized by the first of the year, so this is a challenge,” Arant said.

In addition, students will be required to give an extemporaneous three- to five-minute oration based on one of four published Constitutional amendments, which will be selected at the time of competition.

The local contest will take place Feb. 10 at the Georgia National Guard Regional Readiness Center, 100 Aquatic Circle. The winners will move on to the state contest, which will be held March 1.

From there, the winners will move on to national competition later in the spring.

State and national participants can win thousands of dollars in cash and scholarship funding.

Arant said he and his fellow American Legion members are always impressed by the quality of the local speeches.

“We Legionnaires are very proud of these young Americans and love to hear them talk about the Constitution,” he said.


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