Rising Stars 2019 at their Miniature Golf Tournament.

By CONNER SAKAE

As many as 77% of people today have encountered anxiety when faced with public speaking. The ability to speak comfortably in front of a crowd while also forming precise thoughts is crucial in all walks of life, whether it be business or politics.

Rising Stars is a Japanese American youth leadership program that provides budding students with the opportunity to gain skills needed to succeed in life. Industry professionals such as Vanna Novak, teaching “Speak to Persuade,” give interactive workshops that emphasize life-long skills essential for becoming a leader.

A family affair: Participants in the Rising Stars 15 Miniature Golf Tournament at Golfland in Anaheim.

The intensive eight-month program provides hands-on experience to students who are tasked with organizing a miniature golf tournament fundraiser. Utilizing every skill provided in each workshop ranging from networking to ethics, students solicit sponsorships and donors to create a golf event filled with goodies, prizes, and fun.

Peyton Motoyasu from Rising Stars 18 says, “Rising Stars has helped me develop leadership skills to use in school and in the future.”

Brenden Sakae from Rising Stars 16 talks about the program’s impact on his life: “Rising Stars has helped me by giving me a strong networking foundation and providing me with the fundamental skills to build those relationships”.

The COVID-19 pandemic has emphasized the importance of unity and support within our community. Rising Stars is committed to creating a new generation of Japanese American leaders. The fundraiser will support the Rising Stars Leadership Program 19 for 2022-23.

Rising Stars workshop on cultural values. (Photo by Cyril Nishimoto)

Come out and par-tee with friends and family on Saturday, March 5, at the culmination of the Rising Stars 18 fundraising project, which will take place in the form of a fun-filled miniature golf tournament. Everyone is welcome! Bring your friends and family, enjoy a round of golf at the whimsical Camelot Golfland in Anaheim with an unlimited pizza lunch.

You can support the fundraiser with raffle tickets for $2, for the chance to win Disneyland tickets, an iPad, and a Canon camera.

Saturday, March 5, 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Camelot Golfland, 3200 Carpenter Ave., Anaheim, CA 92806. Price: Children 12 and under, $15; adults, $20; lunch only, $10.

For more information about Rising Stars and the golf tournament, visit https://www.risingstarsylp.org

Vanna Novak shows how to “Speak to Persuade.” (Photo Cyril Nishimoto)

Rising Stars is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization.

Conner Sakae is a sophomore attending Arcadia High School. His favorite subject is science-biology. During his freshman year he started Japanese tea ceremony. He has also become interested in the art of samurai swords and has helped out with events held by Jidai Arts. At school he participates in Model United Nations. Conner applied since he wants to develop his leadership skills. He is also interested in exploring his Japanese heritage and connecting with others from different communities.

Family fun at Rising Stars 17 Miniature Golf Tournament. (Photo by Cyril Nishimoto)

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