Antioch students compete at County Spelling Bee

Eddy Crowder outside of the County Spelling Bee.

Eddy Crowder outside of the County Spelling Bee.

By John Crowder

Students representing 120 schools from throughout Contra Costa County came together to compete at the 39th Annual Contra Costa County Spelling Bee sponsored by the Contra Costa Times, on Saturday, March 21, 2015. Antioch was well-represented at the event, as students from elementary and middle schools in the city, both public and private, vied for the top prize, an all-expense paid trip to Washington, D.C. to compete at the Scripps National Spelling Bee to be held in late May.

Two of the young spellers attending Antioch schools, Eddy Crowder (this writer’s son) and Cassidy Derita, made it to the second round in the written competition. Although both were ultimately thwarted from reaching their goal of advancing to the national level, each expressed their excitement and desire to continue competing in the future.

Eddy, an 11-year-old 6th grader who attends Paideia Academy, comes from a family of spelling bee participants. One of his uncles was a second-place finisher in a state spelling bee, and other uncles and aunts had also reached the state level. This was the second year that Eddy had competed at the county level, and he placed 36th in the contest, going out on the word, facetious.

Asked about his experience, Eddy said, “It was scary and exciting. I like spelling, because I like learning the new words.”

Eddy, whose hobbies include reading, Pokemon, and building with LEGO blocks, plans to continue studying and compete again next year. After college, he hopes to become a video game designer or a teacher (following in the footsteps of his mother and father).

Cassidy Derita, a 5th grader from Marsh elementary, and daughter of Krishanna and Kurt Derita, also has spellers in the family.

Cassidy Derita at the County Spelling Bee.

Cassidy Derita at the County Spelling Bee.

My older brother was in the spelling bee when he was my age,” she said. “My family gave me the confidence.” They inspired her to take up the spelling challenge.

Cassidy ultimately finished 55th in the bee, a strong showing in her first attempt at the county level. She went out on the word, rhinoceros.

When asked about her experience, Cassidy described it as, “challenging.”

“I studied with my parents and grandparents every night!” she said.

Like Eddy, Cassidy is planning to study and participate again, next year. Cassidy’s hobbies include reading, playing games, and bowling. Her near-term goal is to make it to the National Spelling Bee, and, after college, she hopes to be a veterinarian.

Given the strong work ethic these two, and many others in our local community display, Antioch will surely be represented with distinction at the County Bee next year, and in years to come.

the attachments to this post:

Cassidy Derita at Spelling Bee

Eddy at Spelling Bee

One Comment to “Antioch students compete at County Spelling Bee”

  1. Nancy Fernandez says:

    Congratulations to both of them! Excellent job. Hi Eddy!

Leave a Reply