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Onalaska, Holmen to have contestants again at state spelling finals in Madison

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Three La Crosse area schools will be represented by outstanding spellers at a statewide contest in March.

Twenty-five spellers from 13 schools in the region competed Thursday in the CESA-4 Regional Spelling Bee in West Salem, for the chance to reach the state finals in Madison. The top 5 students in Thursday’s contest will move on to state, representing the Holmen and Onalaska Middle Schools, and Cochrane-Fountain City. A champion was crowned after just six rounds of spelling.

An Onalaska student named Ali was the top finisher in the hour-long regional bee, taking the local title on with a correct spelling of “artifice.” At last year’s state contest, another Onalaska speller finished 5th, and a Holmen student placed in the top 10. This is the third time in four years that the CESA-4 regional bee has been won by an Onalaska Middle School speller.

The Badger Bee in Madison sends at least one Wisconsin contestant to the National Spelling Bee, held in Washington around Memorial Day.

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from UW - La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area. He regularly covers local courts and city and county government. Brad produces the features "Yesterday in La Crosse" and "What's Buried on Brad's Desk." He also writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse. Brad been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.

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