FREEHOLD, NJ – The Sunrise Optimist Club of Freehold is pleased to announce the winners of their annual essay contest. The theme for this years contest was The Power of Youth. The winning essays focused on what defines youth and the power and opportunity that it affords. First Place was awarded to Johnine Licht, St. John Vianney High School; Second Place to Aylssa Rorke and Third Place to Julia Pugachevsky, both at Colts Neck High School. Each girl received a certificate of recognition and presented her essay at a recent Sunrise Optimist meeting.

The annual contest is open to high school students under the age of 18 who live in towns covered by the Freehold Regional district. Says Len Nachbar, President-elect of The Freehold Sunrise Optimist Club All of our members were extremely impressed with the quality of the essays that were presented at our recent breakfast meeting. The essay contest is sponsored by Optimist International to give young people the opportunity to write about their opinions regarding the world in which they live. The winning essays will be sent on to the Atlantic Central district level (which covers Pennsylvania, New Jersey and northern Delaware) for judging.

The Sunrise Optimist Club of Freehold has been participating in the Optimist Essay contest for 21 years and has been active in the community since 1986. In addition to the Essay contest, the Club has its own scholarship program for seniors at a public or private high school within the towns served by the Freehold Regional High School District who demonstrate academic excellence and community involvement. Two scholarships are given out: the Sunrise Optimist Club of Freehold Ray Favocci Memorial Scholarship for $3,000 and the Joseph Salkin Scholarship for $2,000. Some of the other programs and service projects that the Club supports include: Camp Quality New Jersey, a free sleep-away camping experience and year round support program for children with cancer aged 6-16 years; the Hot Shot Basketball Tournament (grades 4-9); and establishing.

Add One/ Essay Contest Winners Announced
April 2, 2009

and advising Junior Optimist Clubs in the area to teach children the importance of civic service. For more information regarding the Freehold Sunrise Optimist, visit

The Sunrise Optimist Club meets every Friday morning from 7 to 8 AM at the Golden Bell diner on Route 9 in Freehold. Club membership represents a cross-section of the business, public, social, and cultural life of the Freehold area and is open to all adults of good character and community standing. The club is actively seeking new members and encourages anyone interested to attend a meeting.

Optimist International is one of the worlds largest service club organizations with adult and youth members in 3,800 clubs in the United States, Canada, the Caribbean, Mexico and throughout the world. Carrying the motto Bringing Out the Best in Kids, Optimists conduct positive service projects that reach more than six million young people each year