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Lanier Tech team wins Jackson County literacy bee

POSTED: February 12, 2009 11:56 p.m.

The Braselton Antique Mall team, whose members were dressed like a Shakespearean character and two bees, compete in Thursday night's 10th Annual Leap into Literacy Spelling Bee in Jefferson as other teams look on. They called it "To bee or not to bee" and earned the best costume award for their efforts.

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JEFFERSON — Bees really do compete in spelling bees.

At least they did Thursday night in Jefferson during the 10th Annual Leap into Literacy Spelling Bee.

The spelling bee, held in the Jackson EMC auditorium on Commerce Road, was a fundraiser for the Jackson County Literacy and Work-Based Learning programs.

Members of the Braselton Antique Mall team were dressed like a Shakespearean character and two bees, which represented “To bee or not to bee.” It earned them the best costume award.

Although most spelling bees are an individual competition, this one was more of a team effort.

“The teams are made up of three members and they all come up to the microphone when it is their turn,” said Sandra Fite, a spelling bee organizer. “If they misspell the word, they have one opportunity to give $100 to stay in the competition. If they misspell another word then they are eliminated.”

Ten teams competed for the title of spelling bee champion. Teams included: Braselton Antique Mall, city of Jefferson, East Jackson Comprehensive High School, First Commerce Bank, Jackson Electric Membership Corp., Jefferson Area Business Association, Jefferson City Schools, Southeast Toyota Distributors, Lanier Technical College Adult Education Program and Tanger Outlet Mall.

The words started out straightforward with things like anchor, but became a little tricker, like “cipher,” “cemetery” and “soliloquy.”

After asking for a definition, the Lanier Technical College team claimed bragging rights for the year when they successfully spelled “archipelago,” which is a group of islands.

Besides bragging rights, the teams were competing for their pick of gift certificates to Tanger Outlet Mall or a set of three Adirondack chairs built by the East Jackson Comprehensive High School construction class.

The first team to be eliminated, Jackson EMC, also received a prize — a dictionary for each team member.

The Southeast Toyota Team won the most spirit award.


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