Can you spell ‘fundraiser’? Spelling bee in support of scholarship fund enters sixth year

Barbara Gross, left, and Jan James represent Vashon Community Care at last year’s spelling bee.  - File Photo
Barbara Gross, left, and Jan James represent Vashon Community Care at last year’s spelling bee.
— image credit: File Photo

The Vashon Community Scholarship Foundation’s annual spelling bee — where top island spellers compete for a good cause — is set for this weekend.

Competitors are welcome to participate in teams or as individuals, in costume or not, to spell some of the trickiest words in the dictionary.

So far 15 teams have registered, ac-cording to organizer Barbara Gustafson. Registration will remain open until the day of the bee, she noted, and more teams are still welcome.

Organizers have not set a financial goal for the event, though they would like to raise $4,000 to $5,000 dollars, Gustafson said. Instead of focusing on money, she said, organizers are focusing on hosting an “intellectually fun” community gathering, with judges, a costume contest and as many teams participating as possible.

Vashon Community Care is sending a team again this year, Gustafson said, and each of the grades at Vashon High School will be represented as well.

“We just love that we have this great mixture from the community,” she said.

Some of the toughest teams from recent years are not competing this year, she noted, so spelling bee fame may be open to a new group of fearsome spellers. Winners will receive Irene Otis commemorative tiles and jars of Terry Roth’s island-made honey.

Winners of the costume contest, decided on by the audience, will be able to compete for free in the 2014 bee.

As in years past Jeff Hoyt and Jeanne Dougherty will emcee the event.

To register, contact Barbara Gustafson at 463-1638 or email

The bee will be at 7 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 2, at the Vashon High School theater. Admission is $15 for adults and $10 for seniors and students.


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