The Genoa Lions invited the 12 finalists in the district spelling bee to dinner Jan. 17 at the Masonic Temple in Genoa.
Three students in fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth grades were successful in their class spelling bees and were ready to spell their way to the regionals to be held at Kishwaukee College in March.
The winner of this year’s Genoa-Kingston Spelling Bee was Bryanna Sonntag, an eighth-grader at Genoa Middle School and the daughter of Garret and Tammy Sonntag of Genoa. The second-place winner was Alyssa Mostek, daughter of Joshua and Amber Mostek of Genoa. She is a sixth-grader at Genoa-Kingston Middle School.
Sonntag and Mostek spelled for 24 rounds to determine the winner. Their nearest competitor was eliminated before the 12th round. The third-place winner was sixth-grader Kiefer Tripp.
Dinner was hosted by Lions President Jerry Helland and the Genoa Lions Club, which provided the trophies for the first- and second-place winners. Genoa’s McDonald’s donated a $10 Arch Card for each contestant.
Assistant Principal Craig Butcher of G-K Middle School acted as “pronouncer” and G-K Superintendent Brent O’Daniell was on hand to offer encouragement to all of the students.
Emily Fowler organized the spelling bee and was assisted in judging by G-K Middle School Principal Angelo Lekkas and Katie Schumacher. John Francis, principal of Genoa Elementary, also was there to encourage the students.
Here is a list of the student participants:
Fifth grade: John Swineheart, Fernando Flores and Mia Wise
Sixth grade: Kiefer Tripp, Alyssa Mostek and Dylan Pagel
Seventh grade: Mya Marshall, Laila Martinez and William Berndt (replaced Miranda Westbrok)
Eighth grade: Bryanna Sonntag, Nathan Kawalski and Elaine Lin
Special thanks go to the Masonic Temple and the folks who prepared the meal and to Gene Bradford and McDonalds for the Arch Cards, and Rene VanDerHeyden for making the arrangements with the school district. The trophies were from Hirschbein Trophies in Sycamore.