Tuesday May 10, 2011


Just Say No

The Optimists and Chilliwack Secondary School drama students deliver poignant message

Submitted by the Chilliwack Optimists


or the sixteenth consecutive year the Optimist Club of Chilliwack will be sponsoring the Just Say No drama production. The event has always been held at the old Arts Centre but this year it will be moving to GW Graham Theatre due to the high rental fee at the new Cultural Centre.  

All District 33 grade four students will be invited to attend free of charge. As in the past, The Optimist Club is working in partnership with School District 33 and providing the two day rental of the school theatre and a donation of $1000.00 for the Chilliwack Secondary Drama Department.

The district is providing the bussing for this event with the help of an additional sum of $600 donated by the Optimist Club to help cover the bussing costs due to the high cost of transportation. Randy Walker, from the bussing department, has implemented thoughtful and strategic bus scheduling to keep the cost of bussing as low as possible once again this year.

There will be four performances over a two day period and the performance times have been determined by the availability of the busses.

Optimist Club event co-ordinator, Glenda Standeven, says, "Under the guidance of Mr. Brent Moore, the Chilliwack drama students have continually provided top quality performances. Mr. Moore has indicated that his students are eagerly anticipating the production this year.

They manage to very effectively deliver the ‘Just Say No’ message in relation to peer pressure, drugs, alcohol, and tobacco abuse. Every year we have seen an improvement in the presentation of this important message. Chilliwack Secondary has a drama department to be proud of and the Optimist Club is pleased to donate $1000.00 for their continued participation in this annual event."

Last year every school was able to attend over the two scheduled days and, so far, only Evans Elementary School has been unable to work the event into their calendar this year. Private schools are also encouraged and invited to attend with the understanding that they must provide their own transportation. Private schools with grade four classes who want to attend are asked to call Randy Walker, School District 33 Bussing Department, at 604-792-1255 to determine which performances still have seating available.

The GW Graham Theatre holds up to 350 individuals plus it accommodates three wheelchairs. The bussing department has done an excellent job of arranging the transportation for this event in the past and this year Standeven thinks will be every bit as successful even with the move to a new venue. "There are more than 1000 grade four students in school district 33 so this is a very effective way to deliver the ‘Just Say No’ message in a short period of time and with a minimum cost," says Standeven.

The production dates for this year are as follows:

These dates have been set aside at GW Graham. The Optimist Club hopes to continue supporting the youth within our community for many years to come.

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