Spelling bee televised on ESPN

Rebecca Olson is a national contestant in Thursday
Rebecca Olson is a national contestant in Thursday's spelling bee.
— image credit: Cynthia Woolbright

Oak Harbor Middle School student Rebecca Olson competes in the 75th Annual Scripps Howard National Spelling Bee which will be broadcast live on ESPN Thursday, May 30, from 7 to 9 a.m. and 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. A taped version will appear on ESPN2 on Thursday, May 30 at 5 p.m.

At the national contest Olson will be up against 249 other participants from across the nation, including two contestants that are back for their fourth year, eight third-year national contestants and 44 two-time contest veterans.

Olson’s family, including her mother Carol, her father Jess and 10-year-old brother Chris, will be in Washington, D.C., to cheer her on.

At this year’s Whidbey Writers Conference in early March, Olson grabbed first place in the eighth grade fiction category with her piece titled “The Granting.” She also participated in the Young Authors Conference in the fifth and seventh grades.

The last student from the Oak Harbor School District to go on to the national bee was Oak Harbor Middle School student Kyle Carothers in 1991 and 1992.

The last Washingtonian to win the Scripps Howard Bee was Amy Marie Dimak of Seattle in 1990, with the word “fibranne,” which according to Webster’s, is the trademark for a fabric of spun rayon often woven to resemble linen.

For more information about the Scripps Howard National Spelling Bee, including a list of winning words, go to

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