March 15, 2018. Louisville, KY. – Students from around Kentucky and Southern Indiana will compete in the 25th annual Ford Motor Company Kentucky Derby Festival Spelling Bee on Saturday, March 17th. The competition starts at 11 AM in the Bomhard Theater at the Kentucky Center (501 W. Main Street in Louisville). 64 students in grades 4th through 8th will compete on Saturday. They qualified by winning their respective school and county bees.
Said Kimberly Hofmann, Ford Zone Manager for the Cincinnati region: “As one of the top employers in the state, Ford is committed to driving a brighter future in Kentucky. We’re proud to help recognize these dedicated and talented students from all over the region.”
The champion of this year’s Spelling Bee will receive The Fillies Scholarship Fund, a $10,000 Savings Bond at maturity. 2nd Place receives a $5,000 U.S. Savings Bond at maturity. The three following placers also receive savings bonds – $3,000 for third, $1,500 for fourth and $1,000 for fifth. Prize money will be provided by the Kentucky Derby Festival Foundation – the Derby Festival’s charitable arm.
“This is one of our more far-reaching events and showcases students from around Kentucky and Southern Indiana,” said Mike Berry, Kentucky Derby Festival President and CEO. “We are fortunate to have partners like The Fillies, Inc., and our Foundation in offering savings bonds to the top five spellers. We hope those funds will help college expenses.”
In addition to a $10,000 saving bond, the overall Spelling Bee champion will receive a Britannica online subscription gift certificate, a copy of Valerie’s Spelling Bee Supplement, as well as Tile Lock Scrabble. The winner will also have the opportunity to ride the Winner’s Float in the 63rd annual Republic Bank Pegasus Parade on May 3rd. Contestants 1st through 4th each receive an Amazon gift card and custom trophy.
The Kentucky Derby Festival Spelling Bee is sponsored by Ford Motor Company, with Contributing Sponsor Texas Roadhouse. Media Sponsors include Kentucky Monthly and 98.9 Radio Now.
The Derby Festival is an independent community organization supported by 4,000 volunteers, 400 businesses and civic groups, Pegasus Pin sponsorships and event participation. It entertains more than 1.5 million people annually. This involvement has made the Festival the largest single attended event in Kentucky and one of the leading community celebrations in the world.