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'The 25th Annual Putnam Spelling Bee' garners laughs

Allergy-prone William Barfee's (portrayed by Miles Harju Brown) magical foot helps him correctly spell difficult words. 1 / 2
Six awkward spelling bee champions -- joined by four spellers recruited unexpectedly from the audience -- prepare for "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee," led by longtime hostess Rona Lisa Peretti (Sara Simpson). (Photos by Shannon Geisen/Enterprise)2 / 2

Six distinctive spelling champions learned that winning (and losing) isn't everything in "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee," a musical comedy presented jointly by the Park Rapids and Menahga high school drama departments over the weekend.

The crop of "spelling contenders" included last year's champ Chip (a Boy Scout), Logainne (the youngest contestant), Coneybear (a goofball), Barfee (an allergy-plagued student), Marcy (an over-achieving parochial student) and Olive (a tentative newcomer).

"The 25th Annual Spelling Bee" is a 2005 Broadway show and Tony Award winner.

The high school production was directed by Park Rapids new drama coach, Abby Sellnow. Menahga's choir director, April Hodge, served as music director. Completing the team were technical directors are Jamie Jokela and Victoria Harju and choreographer Katie Jaeger.