By Daria Anderson-Faden
The Observer 


Andrew Hawthorne Wins Kimball Spelling Bee, Earns Way To State Bee


February 23, 2023

Daria Anderson-Faden

This year's Kimball Spelling Bee 4th-8th grade participants are, front row from left, Timothy Hawthorne, Nash Burback, Allie Cook, Kyndall Reich, Mattie Eggli, Andrew Hawthorne, Katie Hawthorne, Delanyi Enevoldsen, Mason Brown and Tyler Whitney. Back row: Gigi Yannacci, Chloe Duran, Carly Norberg, Trey Cook, Tallyn Chesley, Wyatt Cook, Aundrea Christensen, Ava Anderson, MacKenzie Miller. Below: champion Andrew Hawthorne and runner-up Aundrea Christiansen.

The final two spellers at the Kimball Spelling Bee, Andrew Hawthorne and Aundrea Christiansen, battled back and forth with words such as "homeopathic," "ballast," "hematology" and "mercenaries." Finally, seventh grader Andrew spelled "conjugate" correctly to achieve his dream since 4th grade, winning the spelling bee.

The odds for either a Hawthorne or a Cook to win the spelling bee were favorable as the spelling bee was a family affair.

Before the contest, Andrew admitted he was "kind of nervous" and had been practicing a little.

Daria Anderson-Faden

Practice for Andrew has been sporadic because of other activities like basketball and choir, but now his focus is on the state spelling bee in Omaha on March 18.

Prior to the contest, most spellers admitted to being nervous.

Andrew's siblings, Katie and Timothy Hawthorne, were contestants, and Trey, Wyatt and Allie Cook also were in the hunt. Ironically, the south Kimball bus route that the Cooks and Hawthornes ride had nine spelling bee participants out of 22 spellers.

Last year Trey Cook was the champion.

In addition to Andrew receiving the championship trophy and Aundrea earning runner-up, the top speller for each grade received a trophy. But most important all spellers received the best prize, a chocolate Hershey bar.


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