News And Events

News And Events


Basil Carpenter and Janet Thompson

The flowers at the Valley Country Club were in full bloom and provided a vibrant welcome to guests as they arrived for the Denver Branch Annual Meeting on Sunday, July 10.  Members enjoyed beverages and mingled, stopping briefly as president Bruce Haefner offered an official welcome and invocation.  The generous brunch buffet included an assortment of pastries, fruit, yogurt, eggs, breakfast meats, juice and coffee. 

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A Royal Evening

The evening of Thursday, March 10 was a royal one as over 50 ESU Denver members and guests gathered to hear the behind-the-scenes details of the Royal Wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton.  Ian Thompson, a former verger at Westminster Abbey and current Liturgical Assistant at Denver's Saint John's Cathedral, shared photos of the interior of Westminster Abbey as it transformed for the special day.  Ian explained how the wedding site was selected, the television cameras were concealed and the event went off seamlessly.  Photos and mementos of the special day were on display and Ian graciously answered questions before and after the event.  

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Raising a Glass to the Queen

On a lovely afternoon, Sunday, June 12, members of the Denver Branch of the English-Speaking Union and their guests gathered to celebrate the birthday of Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II.  The celebration was held at The House of Commons, an English Tea Room located in lower downtown Denver.  Members and their guests were treated to individual pots of tea, selected from an extensive tea menu, as well as sandwiches, miniature scones, Scottish shortbread and homemade petit fours.  Champagne glasses were filled and as ESU Denver Program Co-Chair, Josie Papazis offered toasts, first to U.S. President Barack Obama and then to Queen Elizabeth, members raised their glasses in tribute to the Heads of State.  

Guests make their selections from the tea menuGuests make their selections from the tea menu

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Denver Branch Hosts a Successful Region XIII Conference

The weekend of May 20-22 was a busy one as the ESU Denver Branch hosted the Region XIII Conference. Denver Branch members welcomed representatives from five branches in addition to ESUUS Executive Director Christopher Broadwell and Deputy Executive Director Edward Mohylowski for an action-packed affair.  The weekend started off with a Friday evening reception at the Denver Athletic Club.  Saturday morning, the Denver Branch Board meeting was followed by a presentation of National programs by Christopher Broadwell.  Many guests proceeded to lunch and a Denver Art Museum tour led by our own Mary McLean.   Saturday evening at the Denver Country Club,  members and guests enjoyed dinner and a lecture by Evelyn Wrench Speaker, Paul Edmondson.  The weekend concluded Sunday morning with the Region XIII meeting.  

Seattle Branch members Patricia Haggerty and Clarke O'Reilly at the Friday night reception

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Sensational Shakespeare Competition on Super Bowl Sunday

2016 Shakespeare Competition Winners

The 2016 Denver Branch Shakespeare Competition was held on Sunday, February 7 at the University Theatre on the University of Colorado, Boulder Campus.  ESU Denver was fortunate to partner with the Colorado Shakespeare Festival and the CU Department of Theatre and Dance for this year's competition.  Each student advanced to the competition by preparing a Shakespearean monologue and sonnet and winning their individual school competitions.  The day before the event, Amanda Giguere, Literary Manager of the Colorado Shakespeare Festival, coordinated a half-day workshop with a teaching artist to help participating students prepare for the competition.

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BUSS Recognition Dinner

Karen Kellogg-Fain, Polly Cox, Sue Stokley, Aimee Arens (BUSS scholarship recipient) and Michael Lopez

The annual British Universities Summer School (BUSS) Dinner is an anticipated event that never disappoints and this year's event was no exception. The evening, held on November 5 at Denver's University Club, began with a cocktail reception, providing a perfect time for members to mingle while chatting with the 2015 BUSS scholarship recipients and their guests. Following dinner, Chairperson of the BUSS Committee, Michael Thornton, introduced the honorees by reading excerpts from their scholarship applications. It was then time for the teachers to speak and their presentations were captivating.

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Holiday Celebration Friends, Refreshments and Scholars

Winning Writing Competition Students with Ruth Beckley
Holiday spirit was alive and well at the ESU Denver Holiday Tea and Award Presentation on Saturday, December 12. As the streets filled with snow, members gathered inside the Denver Women's Press Club, to share holiday cheer and honor the winning writers from the sixth annual Dr. Howard F. Beckley Writing Competition. These students read their entries based on this year's topic "What is Genius," for those in attendance. The 2015 winning students, all from Denver East High School were: First Place, Eric Dellavalle; Second Place, Nicholas Chavez; Third Place, Charlotte Thayer; Honorable Mention, Brendan Douglas; Honorable Mention, Zak Jacobs. These students' entries were evaluated by a panel of judges including high school and college educators; and outstanding members of the ESU community.

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Summer Study in the UK

Oxford, the Globe Theatre, the University of Edinburgh
FREE to local public high school English, Drama, and History Teachers 

Since 1957, 132 Denver-area teachers have studied in England. You may know some of the teachers who have received fellowships: Carol Hendry from Chaparral attended the University of Edinburgh, and Susan Stokley went to Oxford; Lisa Cillessen from Standley Lake High School and Brian Kurz from Grandview were in London at the Globe; DPS principal Nick Dawkins studied at Oxford as did Alan Martin and Mary Connelly.  Mary Davenport from Bruce Randolph attended the Globe, and Josie Papazis from South High School studied at Exeter College in Oxford.  Cindy Poinsett from Cherokee Trail High School and Timothy Reyes from Overland High School attended the Globe.  In 2015, Aimee Arens and Todd Madison of East attended Oxford.  Their experiences were memorable, and all agree that they are better teachers as a result. 

Best of all, the fellowships are FREE. 

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Packed House for A Genteel Captivity— A Centennial Remembrance

On Thursday, September 24 in St. John's Cathedral,  Christiane Citron enthralled Denver Branch members and their guests with stories from the unpublished memoir of Sir Clive Morrison-Bell.  This 22-year member of Parliament, Personal Private Secretary to Winston Churchill, and internationally acclaimed author was also a World War I Prisoner of War.  Christiane shared stories of Clive-Bell's hard-to-believe experience over four years as a German POW in five different German POW camps, followed by a surprising internment in Switzerland.  Prior to the presentation, attendees socialized while enjoying wine, beverages and light appetizers.  Christiane lingered after she was finished speaking, answering questions and swapping stories with those in attendence. 

Christiane  Citron

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Celebrating the Queen

Doris Payne, Jean Riddle, Pat LaMoe, Beverly Cotten and Ruth Beckley

On Sunday, June 7, members of the Denver Branch of the English-Speaking Union and their guests gathered to celebrate the birthday of Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II.  The celebration was held at Beacons Community Space, a unique venue in the heart of the Cherry Creek North Shopping District.  Members and their guests had time to socialize prior to sitting down for the formal tea, catered by English café and tearoom, The House of Commons.  Tea sandwiches, miniature scones, Scottish shortbread and homemade petit fours were accompanied by pots of tea.  Guests were then served glasses of champagne as ESU Denver President, Bruce Haefner offered toasts, first to U.S. President Barack Obama and then to Queen Elizabeth. Glasses were raised and socializing continued.

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The English-Speaking Union

Denver Branch

Denver Branch Landmark Photo

Welcome to the ESU

The ESU celebrates English as a shared language to foster global understanding and good will by providing educational and cultural opportunities for students, educators, and members.

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