At the end of this month, from 30 September through 2 October, AARP holds its annual gathering of members in Orlando, Florida. Normally, I wouldn't take notice (I'm not much for crowds of 25,000 or airplane rides under current flying conditions) but an AARP representative contacted me about entering a contest to win an all-expenses-paid trip to their Orlando@50+ event and blog about it.
Apparently, several TGB readers suggested me for the contest (thank you) and, said the rep, there would be three elderblogger winners. I declined to participate (see parenthetical comment above) and I was then invited to be one of the judges.
Since I like the idea of a large organization supporting elderblogging and it involved staying put in front of the computer, I accepted and AARP posted a nice story announcing my judgeship. Craig Newmark, founder of craigslist, was also a judge.
What was required of entrants was this:
”To enter, simply publish an article on your personal blog on what you love about life@50 (or above). The post must be no more than 600 words.”
And in exchange for the free trip, lodging, meals and a Flip camera to use at the event and keep, the winners would have the
“...chance to be the eyes and ears of AARP's membership, sharing news, information and stories with those unable to attend the event and to have a great time doing it! You will have a media pass to the event and the opportunity to meet and interview high profile speakers.”
Among those high-profile speakers are James Carville and Mary Matalin, Whoopi Goldberg, Larry King, Cesar Millan, Jane Pauley, Dave Barry, Martina Navratilova and many more.
In due course, AARP emailed the 11 essay finalists to me with instructions on how to do the judging. It was a load of fun reading them and here, now, are the winners announced by AARP just this morning – you might recognize a couple of them from comments here at TGB:
• Cowtown Pattie who blogs at Texas Trifles for her essay titled Ad Astra per Alia Porci.
• Mr. Go To who blogs at Go To Retirement for his essay titled The Working Life Off-Ramp.
• Frank Paynter who blogs at Listics for his essay titled What's Not to Love?.
Congratulations to all three. I know we will all be following your coverage in Orlando.
And congratulations to AARP, too, for promoting elderblogging. It is a near-perfect activity for elders, a great way to help maintain cognitive function, keep active and make new friends (see today's story at The Elder Storytelling Place).
Of course, we elderbloggers and blog readers already know this. Perhaps the contest and the winners' reporting from Orlando will help bring more elders into our blogging fold.
You can see the AARP announcement of winners here.
At The Elder Storytelling Place today, Marcia Mayo: Friends Today