LACONIA — There are many "busy bees" in the Lakes Region forming teams and preparing for battle as the date for the fifteenth annual Lakes Region Scholarship Foundation Community Spelling Bee quickly approaches.
The Bee, which benefits the LRSF Friends of the Foundation operating fund, will be held on Thursday, Oct. 22 at 6:30 p.m. in the Laconia High School auditorium. Each year, teams from various area businesses, community organizations and schools come together for an evening of competition and fun, all to benefit a good cause. Teams are asked to dress in costume and many blend humor with their expertise in orthography (the proper spelling of a word) to get a chance to add their name to the list of winners on the coveted bee trophy.
Each of the Bee teams is sponsored by area businesses or benefactors. The competition is lively and provides the audience with a unique evening's entertainment. Last year's winners were the "Laconia Librarians". The success of this team in last year's event was particularly special to its 14 year sponsor: the Bob Merwin-State Farm Agency of Laconia. The Laconia Public Library was one of the original teams participating in the first LRSF Community Spelling Bee back in 2001. Additionally, Bob Merwin, vice president of the LRSF in 2001, undertook the daunting task of chairing the then fledgling event. So this Bee victory was particularly "sweet" to both the team and their sponsor. Merwin waited 14 years for a victory for his team, and he has agreed to continue his support of the team and the event. He is hoping that perhaps the Laconia Library bees can make it two years in a row.
Lakes Region Scholarship Foundation is a non-profit organization that currently acts as a clearinghouse for scholarship funds from close to 250 donors. This past June over $311,000 was awarded to 305 students. The June 2015 awards brought the foundation's scholarship dollars' total to over $5.2 million dollars award to more than 4,600 students. This coming year, the foundation will be celebrating their official 60th anniversary of incorporation on February 16th. So much accomplished thanks to the generosity of about 525 donors over those 60 years, not including the thousands who have contributed to specific memorial funds or special fundraisers.
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