Warner wins 35th Allen County spelling bee

LIMA — Allen County students showcased their knowledge in academia Saturday morning. Sixteen students from each elementary and middle school participated in the county spelling bee, held this year at Ohio State University-Lima.

”Every one of them qualified by winning the school spelling bee,” Allen County Educational Service Center Gifted Coordinator Brad Clark said. “I was incredibly impressed with the words that were spelled. I started to worry whether I had enough words. Next year, I will have even more, just in case.”

After more than 10 rounds of spelling, eighth-grader Nathan Warner of St. Gerard Catholic School won the spelling bee. The second-place winner was fifth-grader Bay Petree of Bath Elementary. The third-place winner was Ope Balogun from Shawnee Middle School. The three winners received gift cards for $100, $75 and $50, respectively.

“I was very impressed with their elementary and middle school ability today,” Clark said. “It is good to see kids competing in something. I was very active in sports, and my kids were active in sports. It is nice to see kids get out, compete and represent their school in something besides an athletic event.”

Each student received an award for their achievement in spelling. The event was judged by Craig Kupferberg and Brenda Beach from the Allen County Educational Service Center. The students who participated in the event were each spelling winners from their school.

“We had every kid, every student say what school they were from and what grade they ran,” Clark said. “Everyone has their niche where they can be successful. Some of the children were only fifth graders competing against eighth graders.”

The Spelling Bee participants included:

• Neveah Smith from Bath Middle School

• Gabe Foster from Bluffton Middle School

• Arianna Palomares from Delphos Franklin

• James Ridenour from Delphos Jefferson

• Grant Schinnen from Delphos St. John’s

• Jaxson Stewart from Liberty Christian School

• Owen Crisenbery from Perry Elementary School

• Vivienna Herron from Perry Jr. High School

• Zoe Huber from St. Charles Catholic School

• Hannah Brunk from St. Rose Catholic School

• Brock Paulin from Spencerville Middle School

• Gracie Finch from Temple Christian School

Reach Precious Grundy at 567-242-0351.