3 GREAT STORIES: Starring voting, laughter yoga, & the Cubs

Every week, I shine the spotlight on some of the best storytelling in the business and offer my comments. “3 Great Stories of the Week” will post every Monday at 8 AM.

My first vote as an American (11/4/16, KUSA-TV): In a year that has been marked by election fatigue, we could all use a good reminder of the idealistic value of voting.

This piece provides that reminder in a powerful way.

Anastasiya Bolton is a reporter for KUSA-TV in Denver and a Russian native who voted in America for the first time in 2008 as a naturalized citizen. In this first-person opinion piece, Bolton speaks to viewers about why she treats the right to vote as a privilege. She speaks with passion and chokes up repeatedly during the two-minute monologue. Even if she perhaps tips her hand as to who she selected in the voting booth in ’08, she does so with the larger purpose of conveying the importance of the opportunity.

I admire Bolton for stepping out of her comfort zone and offering such an appeal. She presents straightforward honesty and emotion in a political season often criticized for lacking either.

What’s so funny? Laughter yoga (11/5/16, KGTV): I could only find this piece as a Facebook video, but I can only assume it ran on television as well.

It certainly deserves a wide audience.

San Diego photojournalist Tim Hahn delivers a nat-PKG about a weekly gathering in Balboa Park for laughter yoga. It looks as goofy as it sounds but claims unique benefits but those who do it. It also offers some enjoyable visuals with which Hahn executes an entertaining 90-second piece.

I particularly his confidence to begin the story with ten seconds of music from a gentleman at the park. It sets the tone and enables Hahn to show off some sweet visuals; it certainly hooked me in to watch the rest.

Cubs fan shares World Series with late father at Greenwood cemetery (11/3/16, WTHR-TV): In truth, nothing on television made me smile this week as much as watching the Chicago Cubs win the World Series.

I went to college near Chicago and immediately fell in love with Wrigley Field. I don’t follow baseball too diligently, but I made sure to stay up extra-late to watch the Cubs clinch a MLB championship for the first time in more than a century.

The following day, I saw this story and nearly lost it.

I don’t how reporter David Macanally found this story, but he learned about a Cubs fan who drove from North Carolina to Indiana to listen to the World Series at his father’s grave. The fan and his father shared a beautiful bond, and one cannot help but be touched by this continuation of that connection.

Have a suggestion for “3 Great Stories of the Week”? E-mail me at matt@tellingthestoryblog.com.

Matt Pearl is the author of the Telling the Story blog and podcast. Feel free to comment below or e-mail Matt at matt@tellingthestoryblog.com. You can also follow Matt on Facebook and Twitter.

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