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Spelling bee for adults scheduled Thursday

Crawford County Volunteers for Literacy Adult Spelling Bee will be 6:30 p.m. Thursday at the Van Buren Public Library.

This is the second year for the fundraiser and 11 teams already have signed up to participate in the bee, said Dee Carroll, director for CCVL.

Carroll is hoping to sign up to 15 three-person teams to participate in the bee, he said.

Teams can be sponsored by local businesses or individuals, with a sign up fee of $175 per team. Signs with sponsors’ logos or names - including those who donate door prizes - will be posted at the event.

Besides the publicity, teams and sponsors will be helping out a good cause, Carroll said. Proceeds from the event will go toward general costs such as rent and utilities that can’t be paid for with the grants received by the non-profit organization, he said.

“That’s what we do with these funds is to keep us in business, basically - keep our doors open and our lights on,” Carroll said.

Local businesses donate the door prizes that will be given out throughout the bee. A Kindle Paperwhite from Ted McEvoy Shelter Insurance, a Crock-pot Triple Dipper from Ann Ritter and a John Bell print of Main Street Van Buren from Donna Young of Delta Investment are some of the items donated so far.

Words for the spell-off will come from the Scripps National Spelling Bee website, with four categories, Carroll said. Words used will get progressively more difficult as the bee goes on, he said.

Teams can confer before spelling the word and are given 15 seconds to respond. The bee is single elimination, but teams will receive “mulligans” that will allow them to pass on two words. Trophies will be awarded to the first, second and third place winners.

Last year, Morton Family Dentistry brought along a cheer section for each time the team correctly spelled a word, and this year Carroll is encouraging other teams to do the same. He hopes the cheer sections will incite competition, he said.

For added fun, awards will be given to the best cheer team as decided by the audience and for “Furst Aut” to the team that is eliminated first for a misspelling, Carroll said.

“This is kind of a fun event,” Carroll said. “We’re just having fun with it.”

Tickets for door prizes will be $1 each or six for $5. Winners will be called out intermittently during the bee, and will have the option to choose from any prizes on display.

Peter Van Lancker will be the moderator and will direct the flow of the quiz, Carroll said. Two judges will rule on spelling questions and answers. A rules keeper will manage the time clock, and monitor or clarify for infractions.

Drinks and popcorn will be offered at a price of 50 cents each.

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