It was the 125th birthday of our Gavel Club. The meeting began with a descriptive and informative speech from the outgoing President Channa Gunasekara mentioning about the achievements of Gavel within the past year. He then introduced the Toastmaster for the day was Speak Olympiad 2009 Champion Eshan Perera who conducted the customary "President Bashing" for the round robin session.
There were four speeches from the guest toastmasters who were there for this special event, District Governor M.Z. Saleem, Area Governor Srianthie Salgado, TM Hiranthi Ratnayake & UoM Toastmasters Club President TM Hewa, and they elaborated about the importance of public speaking to be extraordinary from ordinary. Then the interesting table topics session was conducted by Sasika Gunasekara and Tharindu Randeny (better known as Ronny). There were two boxes of chits and one of them had certain jobs while the other had a description of a Gavel club member. The volunteer who took each job had to explain why she/he is suitable for each job. Those who picked a chit from the other box had to correctly guess and build a speech based on the described characteristics.
Then we had the presentation of the prestigious Gavellier of the Year award. Dinesh Kenady won that award succeeding previous winners like Niles & Harinda.
The meeting reached its climax with the most important occurrence as the outgoing president appointed the new president for the next year. The president for the next year was no surprise, he is our AIBS finalist Niles Perera. Then Niles appointed the rest of his board members for the upcoming year which he followed up with an outstanding & inspirational acceptance speech relating the new president's Gavel story. He beautifully put to words the transformation he has had as a Gavel club member, and how the club has helped him to overcome his fear for public speaking (which might have inspired him to introduce the now popular "Where Fear Becomes Passion" tagline). Small tokens of appreciation were presented to the outgoing board from the new board just before the adjournment of the meeting to appraise the great service rendered by them to take the club to more success.
Once the meeting came to a conclusion the members and guests went downstairs to enjoy the dinner party organised by the outgoing board. This was followed up by the celebratory cake cutting for our 125th meeting. The evening was concluded with an entertainment session where music was provided by Thenuwan and Thushan, with Pasan's compeering. Nirmal, Hasitha, Thenuwan and Amila were the singers, as the audience joined in with group duets. After a usual photography session at the end the memorable evening came to a close as the club that is a family to all of us celebrated its 125th birthday.