Maybe it's all the odd local names, like Schuylkill, Bala Cynwyd and Lower Gwynedd, but Eastern Pennsylvania has a fair share of students in the National Spelling Bee.
The contest started this morning with 281 spellers undergoing computerized testing at a convention center in National Harbor, Md., south of Washington, D.C.
For the first time ever, they'll have to answer questions about vocabulary -- actually know what words mean -- as they undergo a round of computerized preliminary testing today. Wednesday will have two more preliminary rounds, with on-stage competitions (streamed live on ESPN3 from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.).
The top competitors move on to Thursday's semilfinals (2–5 p.m., ESPN2), followed by the champion-crowning finals (8-10 p.m., ESPN).
Here's a kind of scorecard to help you keep track of the players from Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware. The number before each name is the one the student will wear. Notice that Pennsylvania's contigent, for example, has numbers 207 to 218 (while New Jersey is mostly 147 to 152). Click the name to find out more.
Boldface indicates student is from Eastern Pennsylvania, South Jersey or Northern Delaware.
34. Lillian E. Allingham, 13, seventh grade, Sanford School, Hockessin, New Castle County, Del. ,
147 Nandi Raisa Cook-Creek, 13, eighth grade, Glen Landing Middle School, Blackwood, Camden County, N.J.
148. Eboseremhen I. Eigbe, 13, seventh grade , Galloway Township Middle School, Galloway, Atlantic County, N.J.
149. Indrani Das, 13, eighth grade , River Dell Middle School, River Edge, Bergen County, N.J.
150. Kennith O. Gonzalez, 12, seventh grade , St. Francis Academy, Union City, Hudson County, N.J.
151. Carson Monks, , 13, seventh grade , Home School, Montague, Sussex County, N.J.
152. Orli Weiss, 14, eighth grade , Solomon Schechter Day School, Marlboro, Monmouth County, N.J.
207. Shreyas P. Parab, 12, seventh grade , Northley Middle School, Aston, Delaware County, Pa.
208. Jacob George, 12, seventh grade , St. Norbert School, Paoli, Chester County, Pa.
209. Aditya Mohankumar Rao, 13, eighth grade , Lopatcong Township Middle School, Lopatcong, Warren County, N.J. (sponsored by a Pennsylvania newspaper)
210. Aparajita Rao, 12, seventh grade , St. Joan of Arc School, Hershey, Dauphin County, Pa.
211. Hannah Michele Citsay, 13, seventh grade , St. Anne School, Lancaster, Pa.
212. Ashraya Ananthanarayanan, 12, seventh grade , Spring-Ford Intermediate School, Royersford, Montgomery County, Pa.
213. Anna Tran, 13, seventh grade , Strayer Middle School, Quakertown, Bucks County, Pa.
214. Nina Kelly McManus, 14, eighth grade , Christopher Columbus Charter School, Philadelphia, Pa.
215. Natalie V. Cummings, 14, eighth grade , Canonsburg Middle School, Canonsburg, Pa. (south of Pittsburgh)
216. Colleen M. Reed, 13, seventh grade , Saint Clair Area Elementary / Middle School, Saint Clair, Pa. (north of Reading)
217. Emily M.X. Gunkel, 13, seventh grade , Schuylkill Valley Middle School, Leesport, Pa. (north of Reading)
218. Grant W. Loose, 14, eighth grade , Wyoming Valley West Middle School, Kingston, Pa. (near Wilkes-Barre)
281. Roshni R. Kainthan, 10, fourth grade , Littleton Elementary School, Morris Plains, Morris County, N.J.
See more PhillyLists. Contact staff writer Peter Mucha at 215-854-4342 or email@example.com.