Matthew Dufour, fifth-grader at Superior Intermediate School in Ashtabula, Ohio, won the Browns Give Back Tri-County Spelling Bee in Cleveland. Matthew will represent Geauga, Lake and Ashtabula counties. The Cleveland Browns organization joins the Tennessee Titans as the two NFL teams supporting local spelling bee programs.
Nathan Estep is the youngest in his family of talented spellers. His win at the Regional Spelling Bee in Winchester, Virginia, makes it five Estep siblings to earn nine total trips to the national finals. He is in the eighth grade and his homeschooled. The regional event is sponsored by the Kids Clubs of Northern Shenandoah Valley.
Photo credit: The Winchester Star
By winning the Columbiana County Spelling Bee in Lisbon, Ohio, Justus Black, a sixth-grader from Southern Local Schools, became the fourth member of his family to advance to the Scripps National Spelling Bee. He outlasted his older brother, Silas, who was in the national finals last year. Justus wore his lucky t-shirt on his first try at the regional event. His winning word was "rhetoric."
Photo credit: Patti Schaeffer, Salem News
Robert Gorlach, an eighth grade student at Piedmont Community Charter School in Gastonia, North Carolina, won The Gaston Gazette Spelling Bee on his first appearance at the regional level. He clinched the title with two consecutive words: “intensify” and “broaches.” He prepared by reviewing words with his father during the past several months.
Photo credit: John Clark, The Gaston Gazette
Chloe Holoman, an eighth-grader from Royalton, Minnesota, is the first from her school to ever win the Lakes Spelling Bee. She admits her toughest word was "persistent," but her champion word was "einkorn.” There were 30 participants in the Central Minnesota competition, and Chloe won in the 10th round.
Photo credit: National Joint Powers Alliance
Brooke Danz, a fifth-grader from Riverwood Elementary School in McHenry, Illinois, battled both a bad cold and challenging words to become the McHenry County Spelling Bee champion. Brooke zipped through 31 rounds and finally spelled "topeng" to win the title and a trip to the national finals.
Photo credit: Matthew Apgar, Northwest Herald
Samhita Kumar, a seventh-grader from Winston Churchill Middle School in Carmichael, California, correctly spelled "osphresis" to earn a repeat trip to Washington, D.C., where she will once again try to advance to the Finals. She is the two-time champion of the California Central Valley Spelling Bee, sponsored by The Sacramento Bee newspaper.
Photo credit: Renee C. Byer, The Sacramento Bee
Wait till you hear the Buzz from the Bee!! There are trophies in the house!
Iann Leigh, an eighth-grader at James F. Doughty School in Bangor, Maine, remained humble even though his winning word at the Penobscot County Spelling Bee was “braggadocio.” He said he was excited to win and earn a trip to the national finals. He competed with 34 other spellers in the contest at Husson University that lasted four hours.
Photo credit: Husson University
Brady Hughes is the Cass County Spelling Bee champion. Brady is a sixth-grader in the Pleasant Hill School District. After 12 rounds of words, he spelled “lithe” to win. He has luck on his side, coming from Peculiar, Missouri, where the town motto is, "Where the 'odds' are with you."