Students await their turns to spell in a past county bee, before the pandemic restrictions. (Enterprise file photo)

NYSSA – The Malheur County Spelling Bee is back and in person this year.

The annual event is scheduled for Thursday, March 10, at Nyssa Elementary School.

Students from first to eighth grade from 19 schools in the county are expected to compete, said Mathew Murray, principal at Nyssa Elementary.

For the first time in four years, a new champion is assured.

Cadi Corn, now a high school freshman, won the county title four years running. She won the 2021 title in competition held online, with “cocoon” being the winning word.

The event was last held live in 2020, just before Oregon went into pandemic restrictions.

This year’s event opens at 8 a.m. Participants and observers will have to observe masking and other Covid protocols.

The first round starts at 8:30 a.m. as students compete at each grade level.

The winners from each grade then go into the final “spell off” to settle on who is county champion.

The winner is eligible to compete in the Scripps National Spelling Bee in Washington, D.C.

The costs for the champion and one adult to go to nationals are covered by the money raised for the Malheur County event.

Those would like to donate to support the spelling bee can make out a check to Malheur County Spelling Bee and deliver or mail it to the elementary school at 809 Bower Ave., Nyssa, 97913.

Other events coming up in Malheur County:

PANCAKES: A drive-thru pancake dinner will be offered on Shrove Tuesday, March 1, at Vale Methodist Church. The dinner will be from 5 to 7 p.m.

DIVERSITY: Four Rivers Cultural Center is offering a speaker series on “Diverse Ability,” equity and inclusion. The focus will be on people who persevere with deafness or vision impairment, and those who care for people with Down Syndrome or autism. The program continues one Thursday a month through May, at 6 p.m.

The program’s focus will be on interpreters, March 10; caring for someone with Down’s, April 14; caring for autism, May 12.

UFO NIGHT: ExZacht Sewing invites crafters to gather and work on their unfinished objects – sewing, crochet, painting and other projects – this Friday, Feb. 25. Drop-ins are welcome from 6 to 9 p.m. The shop is at 289 A St. West in Vale.

YOGA: Chair Yoga and Meditation is offered Wednesdays from 10 to 11 a.m. at the Vale Senior Center, 100 Longfellow St. S. The class is the senior project of Taleah Zueger.

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