Chance Persons, an 8th grade student at Metcalf Junior High in Burnsville, is among 49 spellers who have qualified to compete in the Minnesota Public Radio 2016 Metro Area Regional Spelling Bee on March 20 at the Fitzgerald Theater in St. Paul.
The event is being sponsored by Minnesota Public Radio and will be hosted by the station’s Tom Weber.
Students in 4th through 8th grade in Anoka, Carver, Dakota, Hennepin, Ramsey and Washington counties could take an online test and those who scored a 28 or more qualified for the regional bee. The winner of the Regional Bee will qualify for the Scripps National Spelling Bee, to take place in the Washington, D.C., area in May.
Chance became the champion of 32nd annual Burnsville-Eagan-Savage School District 191 Spelling Bee in December in his fourth year of qualifying. He placed 5th in the district bee when he was in 5th grade and placed 7th as a 6th grader. He was the runner up when he was in 7th grade in 2014 and then won the bee in December 2015. Last March, he was among 50 metro area students who qualified to compete in the 2015 Minnesota Seven County Metro Area Regional Spelling Bee.
"I've got a good memory," commented Chance, after earning the district title. "If I've seen a word, I remember how to spell it." He also did some practicing beginning a week before the bee.