The Blount County 4-H Public Speaking Contest was held on Thursday, December 9 at Maryville Broadway United Methodist Church. The 4-H Public Speaking Program is one of the main offerings that 4-H members participate in. Through the public speaking program, they develop communication skills that they will use for the rest of their lives. Many past speakers recalled their memories and the opportunities they have had with 4-H.
All winners of the county competition have the opportunity to enter the regional competition. Grades 4 through 8 move on to the sub-regional competition known as the Big 9 Conference. This competitive group is made up of the following counties: Blount, Claiborne, Cocke, Grainger, Hamblen, Jefferson, Knox, Sevier and Union. The high school class, 9-12, moves on to the Eastern Regional Competition comprised of the 33 counties of Eastern Tennessee.
Winners representing Blount County in both contests will include:
Caroline Waters, fourth year of the Homespun Club; Layla Bland, fifth year, Fairview Club; Alonso Gomez, sixth year, Harbors Gate Club; Zee Carnes, seventh year, Homespun Club; Carlos Gomez, eighth grade, Harbors Gate Club; Daniel Castillo, ninth year, Harbors Gate Club; Ethan Elder, 10th grade, MAC Club; and Eden Carnes, Grade 12, Homespun Club. Others presented speeches: Aubrey Cormier, fourth year, Porter Club; Kinsee Tucker, sixth year, Union Grove Club; Deisy Gonzalez, seventh year, Harbors Gate Club; and Michael Vilaire, seventh year, Homespun Club.
Melinda Russel, Cadence Dilley, Rose Davis, Jim Warner and Allison Elder served as judges and volunteers.
The Big 9 contest is scheduled for Tuesday, February 22, 2022 in Sevier County. The Senior (high school) competition is scheduled for Saturday February 12, 2022 in Knoxville at the UTK Ag campus.