Hello Megan, John, and Corrina

Thank you very much for your generosity in hosting us this past weekend.

We had an absolutely fantastic time.

Andy and Tiffany went 4-3. Ben and David lost in a close break round. Annabelle and Jonathan, our frosh, are, as I say, “building and growing.”

That is a decent showing for a younger group of debaters at a fairly competitive national circuit tournament.

The buffet was absolutely delicious; the rooms were exquisite. The savings to our program were huge in a tight budget year.

We are truly, truly blessed with your kindness.


I hope you enjoy the notes from the students intermixed with the pictures I took below. J




The Team Checking in to the Bellagio


FROM ANNABELLE: The rooms were nicer than any I've ever stayed in, let alone during a debate tournament. I also liked that we were right in the heart of downtown Las Vegas, which I'd never seen before. Not to mention the buffet was awesome.

FROM BEN: I’m really lucky to be able to stay at the Bellagio. I really wanted to say thank you because it was so much fun and I am so appreciative. The Bellagio is a beautiful hotel; the architecture and careful attention to detail really bring out a feeling of inspiration. Thank you.


David and Ben

Tiffany, Andy, Jonathan

Jim J

Front left to right: Tiffany and Annabelle

Back left to right: Ben, Andy, David, Jonathan


Jim and Ali (former Whitman debater) tour the Bellagio Botanical Garden

Ali, former team member, smiles for the camera. She loved it!


Jim in his typically fashionable clothing (yes, that is a mouse moving and clicking a human). J



Jim’s Shots of the Lobby and Fountains at Night




University of Nevada Las Vegas

Above: Tiffany and Andy

FROM TIFFANY: Thank ya'll so much for letting us stay in the Bellagio! It was so nice to go to a comfy, clean bed after rounds. The hotel was just a great place. Thanks again! --Tiffany

FROM ANDY: I loved being able to get a good night’s rest in a spectacularly nice and luxurious hotel.  I enjoyed being able to eat from the finest kitchens in Vegas.  And I loved the view of the fountain, it has impressed me again this year.



Jim heads to Hoover Dam, Lake Mead, and the new O’Callaghan-Tilman Bridge across the Colorado River


FROM AARON: Staying at the Bellagio was great. It's such a step above the rest of the mediocre hotels we could stay at that it's a nice break. It’s also 'pretty cool to be the envy of all the rest of the teams at the tournament. Not to mention - in-house Cirque du Soleil!

(Aaron and Alicia went to the show and loved it. Sorry, no pictures of Aaron.)


More of the Bellagio Botanical Gardens and the Chocolate ‘Waterfalls’



The Fountains at Night



The Team does the Buffet!

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Andy, guest Alicia (former coach-judge for the team), David, and Ben.

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Ben, Andy, David

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Left from the front: Alicia, Annabelle, Tiffany

Right side from the front: Andy, David, Ben, Jonathan


FROM JONATHAN: I enjoyed the buffet, the level of comfort that the hotel provided, and the ability to see an awesome fountain show every night.

FROM DAVID: I had a wonderful time at the Bellagio, and I'll never forget it.  The fountain, the buffet, and the hotel in general make for an unforgettable experience that only one debate team in the country gets to experience.  It's a great reward and validation of all the work we do, and really re-energized me for the rest of the season.  Thanks so much!