On December 8th members of division B gathered in Riga for a 2-day conference, filled with education, entertainment and the spirit of competition. The conference was highly received by all participants with most being sad that the conference could not last longer. One of the highlights was the abundance of guest speakers. The first day started with introductions by Division Director Heikki Siltanen, District PQD Gabriela Roivainen and International Director Tuire Vuolasvirta. The second day started with an introduction by FinTech CEO Matīss Ansviesulis, who gave a riveting speech about the traps of oversharing and the state of modern day “influencers”. Another highlight was the high quality of workshops presented by a total of 6 talented Toastmasters. Workshop topics ranged from improving pronounciation to improving relationships. Participants also greatly enjoyed the entertainment breaks both in terms of catering and in terms of the entertainment. The second day merriment was provided master-entertainer and illusionist Toms Felkers, who left the audience happy and amazed with his tricks and charisma. Of course, the main attraction was the contest part. Participants from Finland, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania battled it out to determine the best Humorous speech and table topics speakers of 2018. The winners of the competitions were as follows: Humorous speech contest: 1st place: Farusil Mullaveettil; 2nd place: Saana Vuolasvirta; 3rd place: Ville Kärnä. Table topics contest: 1st place: Ričardas Pocius; 2nd place: Rea Vela; 3rd place: Farusil Mullaveettil. As the contests were over and everything was moving to an end, there was a sense of sadness in the air. The participants had become close during those 2 days and were reluctant to say their goodbyes. Nevertheless, the participants went home with promises of reunion and a satisfaction of a great weekend. On behalf of the organising team we would like to congratulate all the contestants and give a warm Thank you to all the conference participants! See you all at the next conference in Helsinki in 2019!
Author: Davis Golds, Riga Toastmasters