23rd Annual Corporate Spelling Bee and Auction set

KACE is ready for the community to start buzzing about its upcoming spelling bee fundraiser.

The Kitsap Adult Center for Education (KACE) — formerly known as the Literary Council of Kitsap — is gearing up for its 23rd Annual Corporate Spelling Bee and Auction to raise funds to fulfill the mission of the non-profit agency.

All of the money that was raised, including from the silent auction, goes to support the volunteer-based program. KACE helps adult students with basic English and math skills, GED preparation and English as a Second Language instruction.

The spelling bee event will take place on May 9 from 5:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. at the Baymont Inn & Suites in Bremerton. KACE currently has openings for teams to register and compete in the spelling bee.

“Generally, 10-15 teams compete”, said Ann Rudnicki, executive director of KACE. Registered teams will be given the vocabulary list of a few thousand words to study this month.

“That’s a very different art,” she said of spelling aloud. “You really have to be able to visualize them.”

Last year’s winners were “We Bee Ducks” (Silverdale Rotary team), Port Orchard Rotary and “Debbie Macomber’s Rose Harbor Bees” after 18 rounds of spelling.

The vocabulary words are used from Scripps Howard lists that are provided to students who have gone to national spelling school competitions in the past. Contestants may not write the words down before or while spelling.

Each team that registers pays a $500 fee to go toward the work of KACE. Team members are encouraged to come up with a theme or dress up for the event. Prizes are awarded to the most creative team. Teams have the opportunity for two passes if they desire to stay in another round: one is a freebie, and the other is to “bribe the bee.”

“Ms. Bee” honors the team’s pass into the next round only if she receives $100 in exchange, which also goes toward the fundraising goal. The volunteer who dresses up as Ms. Bee generally pumps up the audience by making her way around the room.

“I get kind of exhausted watching her flit around, to be honest,” Rudnicki said.

Aside from fundraising, Rudnicki said the goal is for participants and non-participants to have fun. The event is free for audience members to attend to cheer their favorite team on.

“The more people there, the more fun it is. I think it is hard to imagine how fun it is unless you’re there,” she said. “It really goes to support a real need in our community in terms of helping people get the skills to gain employment or get involved in our community.”

According to KACE’s website, between 2011 and 2012, the organization provided 12,194 hours of instruction to students in the Kitsap County region. The organization is run by mostly volunteers donating time to help locals pick up necessary skills.

For more information on volunteering or donating to KACE, visit or call 360-373-1539.








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