Community spelling bee raises $11,000 for grants, scholarships

Foothills Community Foundation, a north Scottsdale-based nonprofit, raised more than $11,000 for teacher grants and student scholarships through its Sixth Annual Desert Foothills Community Spelling Bee on April 6.

A team from Cactus Shadows High School, “The Shadowslayers,” won the championship after five rounds of heated competition with 21 other teams. In addition to bragging rights, the team had their names inscribed on the Paul “Buzz” Schilling trophy.

Close to 100 people attended the event, which was open to the entire community. The competition was open to students in seventh grade and higher, as well as adults, according to a press release.

“We applaud all of our participating teams for their competitive spirit and creativity,” stated Chris Winger, FCF president and CEO, in the release. “We’re also grateful for members of the community who came to cheer them on. It’s a fun, lively event and a great way to show our support of teachers and students.”

Winning participants include:

  • Spelling Champions – The Shadowslayers from Cactus Shadows High School Yearbook Team. Team members included Mia Valenza, Alysa Velez and Ashton Seep.
  • Best Team Name – The “Bee”ch Bums from the Black Mountain Elementary Parent Teacher Organization. Team members included Marian Bauer, Lauren Scherling and Alexandra Goodspeed.
  • Best Dressed – May the Force “Bee” With You from Three Phase Mechanical Heating & Air Conditioning. Team members included Renee Schroeder, Danika Kroeger and Julia Groucher.

Proceeds from the community spelling bee will benefit FCF’s Partners in Education program, which raises funds to support local students and teachers through its Teacher Vision Grants and Save One Student Scholarships programs.

For more information, visit and click on Partners in Education, or call 480-488-1090.

The Scottsdale Independent is published monthly and mailed to 75,000 homes and businesses in Scottsdale.

You are encouraged to leave relevant comments but engaging in personal attacks, threats, online bullying or commercial spam will not be allowed. All comments should remain within the bounds of fair play and civility. (You can disagree with others courteously, without being disagreeable.) Feel free to express yourself but keep an open mind toward finding value in what others say. To report abuse or spam, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box.