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Belmont County Spelling Bee Champion Wins Two Years in a Row

Belmont County Spelling Bee Champion Wins Two Years in a Row

The East Central Ohio Educational Service Center, the Times Leader and Belmont Savings Bank sponsored the 2023 Belmont County Spelling Bee on February 2 at Belmont College.

Eighteen students from school districts across Belmont County battled to win a trip to the Scripps National Spelling Bee Finals! After eleven rounds, our 2023 winner is Jacob Theaker. Theaker took first place for the second year in a row. He is an eighth-grade student from Martins Ferry City Schools.

Theaker, along with winners from all the other regional Bees across the nation, will participate in the National Finals in Washington D.C. on June 1. Part of his prize is the cost of the trip including private shuttle service from Pittsburgh, PA to an Amtrak train ride to the Nation’s capital, and hotel accommodations. The finals and awards banquet are hosted by the Gaylord National Resort Convention Center. Theaker also received a $500 cash prize, first-place trophy, a Merriam-Webster Unabridged Online Certificate, The Samuel Louis Sugarman Award, a plaque with two winning words for school display, the Traveling Trophy for school display, and a one-year subscription to the Britannica Online Premium.

Second place went to Shadyside Middle School student, eighth grader Chloe Meholovitch. Meholovitch received a $250 cash prize, a second-place trophy, and a Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary. She will also serve as the Belmont County alternate for the finals if Theaker is unable to attend. Union Local Middle School eighth grader Clay Utter’s third place win secured him the third-place trophy and a $150 cash prize. Jaden Beck, eighth grade student at Bridgeport Middle School, finished off the top four and went home with $100 and a trophy. The other fourteen participants earned $50 certificates, ribbons, and bee bobble heads.

This year’s artwork winner is St. Clairsville City Schools eighth grader Lina Stingle. Alina Feth, a seventh grader also from St. Clairsville won second place. The third place artwork award went to Maggie Barnett, a fifth grade student from Martins Ferry Christian Schools.

Thank you to this year’s sponsors for their generous donations. Cash prizes were provided by Belmont Savings Bank. The Golden Ticket award was donated by Bordas & Bordas. The bee bobble heads were provided by the Ohio River Elks club.