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Dylan Reid Is Orange County's Top Speller For 2016
Updated March 3, 2016 7:35 AM
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orange Co. Spelling bee champion.jpg

(PAOLI) - For the second year in a row, students from across Orange County converged on the stage at Ruth Farlow Uyesugi Auditorium at Paoli Junior-Senior High School for the Orange County Publishing Company's Great Spelling Bee.

And for the second year in a row, top honors were captured by an Orleans student. This year it was seventh grader Dylan Reid.

The day began with a field of 20 students. After 71 words, three spellers remained for the start of the seventh round of competition. At that point, Marcus McGuire of Throop Elementary misspelled "periscope" and Cole Hall of Springs Valley Elementary misspelled "ductile." Reid then successfully spelled "acme" to end the round and then spelled "souvenir" to seal his status as the champion. A spell off followed to determine who was officially in second place, with McGuire taking that spot and Hall ending up in third.

"It was another exciting day of competition, and we had a really nice crowd turn out to cheer on the spellers," said Miles Flynn, Orange County Publishing Company Managing Editor and the event's chief organizer. "Of course, all the students on stage that day deserved recognition. Many of them had to survive classroom bees, grade-level bees and schoolwide bees to earn one of those few spaces up there. They all did a great job."

Flynn was the reader for the event. Serving as judges were Martha Nice, Robert Henderson and Todd Marshall. Paoli Junior High School Principal Wes Whitfield gave a welcome message before the contest, and last year's champion, Matthew Ross, also spoke briefly to share some details from his 2015 experience and offer some advice to the spellers.

"It takes so many people and organizations to make an event like this a success. First and foremost, our generous funding partners deserve pats on the back for making this opportunity available to our local students," Flynn commented. "Without the support of the Orange County Community Foundation, Orange County REMC Operation Round Up, Hoosier Uplands Economic Development Corporation, Old National Bank, Springs Valley Bank & Trust Company and Mid-Southern Savings Bank, this event wouldn't have gotten off the ground."

Flynn also thanked all of the teachers, administrators and other people who worked behind the scenes at the qualifying events that preceded the Great Spelling Bee and also Paoli Community Schools for the use of the auditorium.

"Now, Dylan will have some time to make travel plans and get ready for the Scripps National Spelling Bee," Flynn said. "That event will get started with preliminaries on May 24 and 25. The finals will be May 26."

Cost of transportation, lodging, meals and other incidentals for the speller and one parent or guardian will be covered for the six-day, five-night trip.

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