Longview Spelling Bee Benefits Literacy Council

In the age of spell check computer programs, we rarely think of spelling being very difficult - unless you have to do it by memory!

That's what 17 teams lined up to do today in Longview. KLTV 7 News' Bob Hallmark has more on the 17th annual Bee For Literacy, a spelling bee that has become a wildly fun charity event.

Striding in with confidence and swagger, teams from Longview schools, city offices, and businesses were vying for the coveted "Bee For Literacy" trophy.

They came prepared - many with their own cheering sections. The literacy council estimates that 34% of Gregg County adults are functionally illiterate, so they use the money raised from this event to fund tutoring programs.

The competition became intense - with words like extemporaneous, and felicitations - and while some were quick with answers, some struggled.

By the third round, they were dropping like...well...bees.

The eventual winner was the team from UT Tyler-Longview University Center. The winning word was catalanetta - which is an angelfish.

Bob Hallmark / bhallmark@kltv.com