8th-grader Drake Bowers wins Pequot Lakes Spelling Bee

Bowers wins after correctly spelling "deduce"

PLMS Spelling Bee Bowers.jpg
Pequot Lakes eighth-grader Drake Bowers ponders the spelling of his word during the Pequot Lakes Middle School Spelling Bee on Thursday, Feb. 23, 2023. Bowers went on to win the spelling bee.
Dan Determan / Echo Journal

PEQUOT LAKES — Sixteen Pequot Lakes Middle School students — preternaturally skilled in the ways of spelling — walked through the architrave of the school auditorium in a manner that was in no way pellmell, some of whom likely squinched with pangs of nervousness, before they worked to deduce the correct spelling of prevalent words in an effort to be caparisoned with the trappings of a spelling bee champion.

In the end on Thursday, Feb. 23, eighth-grader Drake Bowers came away as the district champion, with “deduce” being his championship word.

He engaged in a lengthy back-and-forth with eventual runner-up Jacob Harrison, who was ultimately eliminated on the word “amenities.” The two exchanged attempts at words like “immersion, “emblem” and “prevalent” for several rounds.

Grade-level winners were Payslen Kerger, grade 5; Lauren Nelson, grade 6; Brekkin Glazer, grade 7; and Levi Winkka, grade 8.

PLMS Spelling Bee Grade Winners.jpg
Pequot Lakes Middle School Spelling Bee grade-level winners, from left: Payslen Kerger, Lauren Nelson, Brekkin Glazier and Levi Winkka.
Dan Determan / Echo Journal

Other words on the spell list included “crematorium,” “forsooth,” “chemotherapy,” “mullioned,” “tilapia,” “hurdygurdy,” “undine” and “cirrhosis.”


Bowers will now take part in the Regional Spelling Bee on Wednesday, March 22, at Sourcewell in Staples, with Harrison attending as an alternate.

Others competing were Lucy Helbing, Sam Harsha, Sailor Grace Arnold, William Craig, Ruby Haugen, Julian Kurten, Ridge Rowland, Gus McKenna, Grant Schlagel and Jobey Tvedt.

PLMS Spelling Bee Winner.jpg
Spelling bee champion Drake Bowers, left, and runner-up Jacob Harrison show off their certificates on Thursday, Feb. 23, 2023.
Dan Determan / Echo Journal

Dan Determan, sports writer/staff writer, may be reached at 218-855-5879 or . Follow him on Facebook and on Twitter at .

Dan Determan has been a reporter for the Echo Journal since 2014, primarily covering sports at Pequot Lakes and Pine River-Backus
What To Read Next
Get Local