Oratorical Contest

Event details

  • March 15, 2023
  • 5:30 pm - 9:00 pm
  • Menomonee Falls Community Center W152 N8645 Margaret Rd, Menomonee Falls, WI 53051

(above) 2021 Oratorical Contest participants


The date for this year’s contest is Wednesday, March 15registration 5:30 and the contest starts at 6:00 at the Menomonee Falls Community Center. We can’t wait to hear from the students since the speeches were so impressive last year!! If you know of a student that would like to participate, please contact Annie at 414-628-3459 or Annie.j@kw.com.  We do have at least two students participating though we are hopeful that more will apply.

We are inviting all our Oratorical winners to attend our Club meeting on April 5 to receive their Medallions, certificates and for our 1st through 3rd Place winners their Prize money. They will also share their Oratorical presentations.


Topic for the 2022-23 school year is: “Discovering the Optimism within Me.”

Contest is open to any student attending school in Menomonee Falls and under the age of 18 as of October 1, 2022 (no minimum age applies). Prepare a speech 4-5 minutes in length on the topic indicated above.

Participants in the Club contest win cash awards based on the number of entries. The winner of the Club contest advances to the Zone contest. Winner of the Zone contest advances to the District contest.

How To Enter: Interested students submit a speech on the pre-assigned topic, “Discovering the Optimism within Me” to Mike Russell or Annie Jurczyk.

2022-2023 Application

Deadline to submit application for participation in the Club contest is March 9, 2023.



Beginning in 1928, the Oratorical Contest has become the longest-running program of Optimist International. The contest is designed for young people to gain experience in public speaking and provide them with an opportunity to compete for multiple college scholarships with a pre-assigned topic.

Oratorical Contest LogoInterested students prepare a 4- to 5-minute speech on the assigned topic to be presented at their local Optimist Club’s contest. The speeches are judged at the Club level, Zone level, Regional level (if needed) and then at the District level. Optimist Club Oratorical Contest Winners will compete at the Optimist District Contest for a chance to win up to a $2,500 scholarship.

First conducted in 1928, this is the second most popular Optimist International Program. Nearly 2,000 clubs participate in this program each year. The winners at the Club level receive medallions and Zone winners receive a plaque. Districts have the opportunity to provide a first place scholarship of $2,500, a second place scholarship of $1,500, and a third place scholarship of $1,000.

How To Enter: Interested students submit a speech on the pre-assigned topic to their local Optimist Club.


Oratorical Contest Co-Chairs: Mike Russell and Annie Jurczyk