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Spanish Daily Journal
     March 10, 2020      #37-70 sdj

Youth served at this year's spelling bee 

Los jóvenes impresionaron en el concurso de

The annual Iroquois-Kankakee Regional Spelling Bee always brings a group of bright minds together, and that has never been more true than this year.

The 2020 bee, which will be held at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Bradley-Bourbonnais Community High School Auditorium, will feature 18 student participants representing grade schools in Kankakee and Iroquois counties. While six of those students are in the eight grade, the remaining 12 are in either the seventh, sixth or fifth grades.

Among the "underclassmen'' is Bradley Central Middle School seventh-grader Quinn Meadows. As a sixth-grade student last year, Quinn won a competitive bee to emerge as the regional champion and local representative at the Scripps National Bee in Washington, D.C., where he spelled challenging words such as bildungsroman, colloquial, chary, charpoy and maestro correctly before being eliminated.

Quinn and the others in this year's field will pursue the same prize, an all expenses-paid trip to the nation's capital courtesy of sponsorship from the Daily Journal and Amita St. Mary's Hospital. 

Olivia Contreras, a sixth-grade student at the Bourbonnais campus of Bishop McNamara Catholic School, joins Quinn as the only other return contestant from last year. Olivia participated as a fifth-grade student last year, a rare feat being duplicated by fifth-graders Hope Brammer of St. Paul Lutheran School and Hailey Gerberding of the Montessori Magnet School this year.

While the bee is a competitive event, camaraderie is evident among the contestants, and that feeling of friendly rivalry spills over into the gathered crowd, which largely consists of family, friends and school representatives.

But the public at large is invited, and the Bradley-Bourbonnais Community High School Auditorium which holds the event has plenty of seats to accommodate a large crowd.

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