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Flores Wins County Spelling Bee Hosted by UA-Rich Mountain

On January 16th, the 2018 Polk County Spelling Bee was held in the Ouachita Center on the main campus of the University of Arkansas Rich Mountain, where Cossatot River’s 8th grade student, Laura Flores, won the event spelling ‘gardenia’ as her final word. Flores will advance to the State Spelling Bee to compete with the top contestants from around Arkansas.

Contestants from Cossatot River School District, Mena School District, and Ouachita River School District-Acorn campus in grades 1st through 8th participated in the county-wide event that was emceed by Andy Philpot, Journalism teacher at Mena High School.

The overall Runner-up was Dusty Davis, at 7th grader from Mena Middle School, and placing third was last year’s winner, Reaghan Weddle, of Acorn High School. First, second & third place winners were presented trophies provided by the event sponsor, Union Bank.

Winners in grades 1st – 8th awarded:

1st Grade: 1st Place: Drew Mabry, Acorn Elementary; 2nd Place: Jacob Smith, Louise Durham Elementary; 3rd Place: Avery Singleton, Acorn Elementary.

2nd Grade: 1st Place: Cady Minoza, Louise Durham Elementary, 2nd Place: Brody Creel, Vandervoort Elementary; 3rd Place: Drew Mabry, Acorn Elementary.

3rd Grade: 1st Place: Ryan Jiang, Holly Harshman Elementary; 2nd Place: Reily Crabtree, Acorn Elementary, 3rd Place: Clint Hennings, Wickes Elementary.

4th Grade: 1st Place: Brandon Dong, Holly Harshman Elementary; 2nd Place: Ryan Jiang, Holly Harshman Elementary; 3rd Place: Bailey Benner, Holly Harshman Elementary.

5th Grade:  1st Place: Yennette Tecson, Holly Harshman Elementary; 2nd Place: Brakiah Burk, Holly Harshman Elementary; 3rd Place: Elijah Smith, Vandervoort Elementary.

6th Grade: 1st Place: Shauntal Tecson, Mena Middle School; 2nd Place: Yennette Tecson, Holly Harshman; 3rd Place: Hudson Vacca, Mena Middle School.

7th Grade: 1st Place: Dusty Davis, Mena Middle School; 2nd Place: Shauntal Tecson, Mena Middle School; 3rd Place: Kaelin Harding, Acorn High School.

8th Grade: 1st Place: Laura Flores, Cossatot River High School; 2nd Place: Dusty Davis, Mena Middle School; 3rd Place: Raeghan Weddle, Acorn High School.

“The event’s success is a result of a collaborative effort and focus on the importance of academics by dedicated teachers and students from the area schools, exceptional emcee Andy Philpot, and generous support of their employees and sponsorship of awards by Union Bank,” said organizers.

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