Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee

The 2017 Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee & Silent Auction was held at the Shilo Inn Ballroom (2500 Almond Street in Klamath Falls) on Thursday, October 12thThe money raised at the event will benefit capital improvements at the libraries, in particular the Klamath County Library Foundation's Educational Garden Deck project at the downtown Klamath County Library.

Meet our 2017 champs!

After a brutal final round against U.S. Bank's Truth In Spelling team, the Oratin' Owls of Oregon Tech emerged victorious: (from left) Christopher Syrnyk, Ben Bunting, and Karen Kunz.

Huge thanks to all our 2017 teams:

  • Cascades Beast - Sponsor: Cascades East Family Medicine Center
  • The Expendables - Sponsors: The Wilson family and friends
  • Hella Spellas - Sponsor: Ignited Ideas
  • The Malbec Mafia - Sponsor: Amerititle
  • Mis-BEE-Hiven - Sponsor: Sky Lakes Cancer Treatment Center
  • The Oratin' Owls - Sponsor: Oregon Institute of Technology
  • A Play On Words - Sponsors: Jo & Elmer Ogborn, The Linkville Players, The Ross Ragland Theater and Cultural Center, and the Supreme Hager Ladies
  • The Powerful Pollinators - Sponsor: Oregon State University Klamath Basin Research and Extension Center
  • The Spellers of Catan - Sponsor: Klamath Health Partnership
  • Truth In Spelling - Sponsor: U.S. Bank 
  • The Type O's - Sponsor: Herald & News
  • The Verbalizing Vulcans - Sponsor: The Friends of the Klamath County Library

Thanks to Our Sponsors!

  • Killer Bee, $1000: 12 Ranch Wines
  • Queen Bee, $500: Oregon Institute of Technology, Bullett Rentals, Sky Lakes, Modoc Contracting
  • Busy Bee, $200: Klamath Health Partnership, First Interstate Bank
  • Worker Bee, $100: My Mechanic
  • Thanks to Hunter Communications for donating a case of wine from RoxyAnn Winery!

Spelling Bee Rules

  1. Each team consists of three members. Team members will be identified by numbers 1, 2, and 3, and take turns, in order, spelling at the microphone. Team members must take turns as the designated speller – one team member cannot speak for the whole team.
  2. A bee is defined as an oral competition – no paper, pens, pencils, or electronic devices allowed.
  3. The Pronouncer will pronounce the word, provide the language of origin, use the word in a sentence, and repeat the word. The Pronouncer can repeat the pronunciation, language of origin, etc., up to three times if requested by the team. No definitions will be provided.
  4. Time limit. Team members may collaborate on the spelling of the word for up to 30 seconds. The “play clock” stops during repetitions of pronunciation, language of origin, etc., by the Pronouncer. The designated speller must begin spelling within the time allotted or immediately after time is called. Once the designated speller approaches the microphone, they may receive no more help from their team. If the designated speller continues conferring with their team after the timekeeper calls time, the round will be scored as a misspelling (see rule #6).
  5. Having started to spell a word, the speller may stop and start over retracing the spelling from the beginning, but in the retracing there can be no change of letters or their sequence from those first spelled. If the letters or their sequence are changed in the respelling, the round will be scored as a misspelling (see rule #6).
  6. Misspells and the Queen Bee. If a team misspells a word (or a round is counted as a misspelling per rules #4 and #5 above), the team may pay a penalty fee to the “Queen Bee” to continue participating in the competition. The penalty for the first misspelling is $50; for the second, $100; and for the third, $150. Either the team or their sponsors must immediately pay the penalty or they will not be allowed to continue. Teams may also invoke the Queen Bee to skip a word, paying the appropriate penalty as if they had misspelled that word. If a team incurs a fourth misspelling (or if they decline to pay a penalty fee), that team is eliminated. The emcee will invite them to join their cheering squads in the audience where they can cheer for their favorite remaining team.
  7. Final Round. When only the final two teams remain, the elimination procedure changes:
  • The Queen Bee can no longer be invoked to correct a misspelling or to skip a word, even if the team has “Queen Bee” penalties remaining.
  • If a team misspells a word, they are not immediately eliminated. The other team shall be given an opportunity to spell the misspelled word. 
  • To win, a team must both correctly spell the other team's misspelled word, and spell their next word correctly.
  • If a team, after correctly spelling a misspelled word, misses the next word on the Pronouncer’s word list, then the new misspelled word is given to the other team to correct. The teams will pass priority back and forth in this way until one team correctly spells two words in a row and is declared the Bee winner.
  • If both teams misspell a word, both teams will remain in the contest. The team that first misspelled the word shall be given a new word to spell and the final round will proceed as above.