September 14, 2016 Louisville, KY.  The Kentucky Derby Festival is looking for contestants to participate in the 24th annual Ford Motor Company Spelling Bee on March 11, 2017. This event will return to the Bomhard Theater at The Kentucky Center.  Students wishing to participate in the Festival’s Spelling Bee must first take part in their county-wide competition, which is organized by each of the respective school systems.

The Festival sends informational packets to nearly 100 counties in Kentucky and 11 counties in Southern Indiana.  For more information on the county spelling bee, students or parents should contact their school superintendent or principal.

61 students from around the region participated in the 2016 Derby Festival Spelling Bee, with Tara Singh of Louisville winning after 158 words at 6 rounds. Singh, who was competing for the third year in a row for private schools in Jefferson County, correctly spelled “Eponym” – (of a person) giving their name to something. She received the John & Joan Murphy Memorial Scholarship Fund, a $10,000 savings bond at maturity from the Kentucky Derby Festival Foundation, the Derby Festival’s charitable arm.

Amber Voightschild of Lawrence County, Indiana, received the Barbara Cox Memorial Scholarship, a $5,000 U.S. Savings Bond for finishing runner-up in the 23rd annual competition. Connor Wade of Pulaski County, finished third, winning a $3,000 savings bond. Maia Kuehne-Seeber, of Jefferson County Catholic Schools finished fourth and received a $1,500 savings bond. Charley Miller of Spencer County finished fifth, winning a $1,000 savings bond. The prize money is provided by the Kentucky Derby Festival Foundation – the Derby Festival’s charitable arm.

The 2016 Kentucky Derby Festival Spelling Bee was sponsored by Ford Motor Company, with Media Sponsors Kentucky Monthly and 840WHAS.

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