YJI photoBack row: Yelena Samofalova, Mary Majerus-Collins and Kiernan Majerus CollinsFront row: YJI Co-founder Steve Collins, YJI alum Danielle Letourneau and YJI alum and Ambassador Collin Seguin
BRISTOL, Conn., U.S.A. - Youth Journalism International took part in the Mum Festival in Bristol, Conn., for the first time this past weekend. We staked our booth - a yellow umbrella shielding a small table in a in a sea of larger tents set up around us - and got to work telling people about this wonderful organization.
It's always easy for us to brag about our talented students, but never as much as when they're standing right there with us. It was especially great to have Danielle Letourneau and Collin Seguin, two graduates of Bristol Central High School, with us to greet their hometown crowd. Both of these standout YJI alums give us plenty of reasons to be proud. Danielle just earned her master's degree in child psychology from the University of Hartford and Collin, a UConn law school graduate, is a practicing attorney in Connecticut's insurance industry.
We were honored and grateful that both Collin and Danielle gave YJI so much of their time yesterday.
Danielle had the great idea to offer face painting at our booth, and thanks to her, we had a steady stream of kids eager to be transformed. Our three high school students who gave their time on Sunday (and Saturday) did their best to make the kids happy.
Our top face painting artist was Yelena Samofalova, whose skill with the crayons turned children into butterflies, tigers, cats, puppies, Batman, Spiderman, Superman, and even a dinosaur. It was tough to tell who was happier with the results -- Yelena or the child looking into the mirror. While everyone bowed to Yelena's superior artistic skills, other students picked up the crayons, too.
YJI students paint faces at the Mum Festival in Bristol, CT
YJI students Mary Majerus-Collins and Yelena Samofalova take a break from face painting at the Mum Festival to display their handiwork
In the end, both Mary and Yelena decided to wear the Bat Signal.
We are happy to have such enthusiastic students and talented artists!
Thanks to everyone who helped make the Mum Festival possible and to all who supported our efforts there. It was fun.
To see larger versions of the photos, click on one of the images.
Side view of our booth on Sunday.