It's bee season and Illinois has some of the best spellers in America.

Let me get this out of the way first. It's always difficult sharing an article on the topic of spelling.

Students Compete In Annual National Scripps Spelling Bee
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One misspelling in the text, and everything the writer is sharing goes from informative to ironic in one fell swoop.

So I will do my best to veer away from irony and stick with information.

Students Compete In Annual National Scripps Spelling Bee
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Info like this, the Scripps National Spelling Bee preliminaries kick off Tuesday, May 31 with 234 competitors from across the United States including students from Guam, Puerto Rice, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and the Department of Defense School in Europe according to spellingbee.com.

The Bahamas, Canada, Germany, and Ghana are also represented in the spelling bee, and why not, the Scripps is the biggest and best.

Students Compete In Annual Scripps National Spelling Bee
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It's so popular, that the Scripps National Spelling Bee could be considered the Super Bowl of spelling bees.

So it's really cool to see Illinois represented well with 14 different competitors.

Scripps National Spelling Bee
Scripps National Spelling Bee
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All of the Illinois spellers are in middle school, so no 2nd, 4th or 5th-grade students repping The Land of Lincoln this year.

That's fine, we've got some great kids to root on, like:

  • Max Foley, 12 from DeKalb.
  • Rehan Koshy, 12 from Chicago.
  • Jonathan Dezir, 12 from Morris.
  • Advaith Balakrishnan, 13 from Chicago.
  • Avyay Kodali, 13 from Chicago.
  • Sahasrad Sathish, 13 from Grayslake.
  • Quinten Atutis, 14 from Freeport.
  • Tejas Katira, 14 from Geneva.
  • Isaac Morowitz, 13 from Chicago.
  • Merit Namaste-Rose, 14 from Sterling.
  • Arnav Kolluru, 13 from Decatur.
  • Henry Olsen, 14, from Peoria.
  • Rumaysa Nadeem, 13 from Chicago.
  • Wolfgang Schaff, 14 from Loves Park.

As a Rockford area resident, I'd like to see Wolfgang Schaff take the title or the 6th-grader representing the state, Max Foley, winning it all too.

(l. to r.) Wolfgang Schauff, Max Foley Scripps National Spelling Bee
(l. to r.) Wolfgang Schauff, Max Foley Scripps National Spelling Bee
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The National Scripps Spelling Bee finals are on ion TV Thursday, June 2 at 7 p.m.

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