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So many people & groups to thank for success of Spelling Bee

To The Daily Sun,

We, at Lakes Region Scholarship Foundation, are so grateful to everyone who participated in our 15th annual Community Spelling Bee. There are so many people and groups to thank.

The Laconia High School Chorus, led by Debbie Gibson, opened the event with an uplifting rendition of the National Anthem. Master of Ceremony, Pat Kelly; Enunciators, Rhetta Colon and Rick Crockford; Judges, Marcia Hayward and Marilyn Lynch each added a special flair to the bee.

The Laconia High School administration and facility crew provided us with all the support to make the venue inviting and workable. Photographer, Steve Loughlin, Tim Cox from Lakes Region Public Access TV (courtesy of station manager, Grace McNamara); The Citizen of Laconia, the Laconia Daily Sun and the Gilford Steamer, all worked to provide coverage for the event.

A big thank you also goes to all who attended the event to cheer on the spellers and purchased 50-50 raffle tickets. We were able to raise over $8,300 this year to benefit our Friends of the Foundation Operating Fund, which helps us cover the expenses associated with administering our scholarship program.

The Spelling Bee would be nothing of course without our teams of intrepid spellers. We would like to recognize a few of these teams for special achievements:

Congratulations to the Winning Spelling Team: LHS Class of 1977! Team members Judy Ball, Ruth McLaughlin and Sherry Weeks were able to score a "hat trick" for their team, bringing home the trophy for the 3rd time, a win not only for the team, but for their long time sponsor the Belknap Landscape Company Inc.

Each year prizes are also awarded for best costumes. The costume winners for the student teams were: First place – the Holy Trinity Social Butterflies (Piper Dion, Emily LeClaire, Kaylee Smith) sponsored by Dana S. Beane and Co, second place – GHS Interact Teenage Mutant Ninja Spellers (Jillian Barton, Clara Jude, Sienna Remick) sponsored by Gilford Rotary Club, third place – LHS Noteworthy Nerds (Lizzie Davis, Emily Huckins, Colleen O'Brien) sponsored by Boulia-Gorrell Lumber Co. and fourth place – GHS Super Spellers (Brendan Bergman, Olivia Harris, Connor McKenna) sponsored by Thom Francoeur-Allstate Insurance.

The costume winners for the adult teams were: First place – LHS Humanities Bee Witched Teachers (Ashley Connolly, Nate Kaplan, Natasha Reiner) sponsored by Bank of New Hampshire.

In addition to the above mentioned teams, the rest of the field included: the Hip-Bees (Lisa Bianco, Jackie Gogolen, Karen Soucy) sponsored by Bianco Child & Family Services; the GHS Word Herd (Maya Rabuck, Nick Sasseville, Shane Sharps) sponsored by Gregg and Sandra Caufield; LHS A "chording" to Jazz (Taylor Gagne, Mariah Hawkins Gladdy Spitz) sponsored by Granite State Credit Union; Third Time's a Charm (Finnian Mousseau, Noah Mousseau, Sullivan Mousseau) sponsored by Mary B. Orton; LHS All About that Bass (Josh Follansbee, Marcus Hubbard, Tim Maczko) sponsored by F. Andre Paquette in honor of Margaret Rose Paquette.

Also: GHS M&M's (Lauren Camella, Allie Nault, Marion Pacheco) sponsored the DeCamp Team at Morgan Stanley; Laconia Librarians (Randy Brough, Jamie Dalton, Natalie Moser) sponsored by Bob Merwin-State Farm Insurance; GHS Saved by the Spell (Nate Boutwell, Will Crowell, Shae Therrien) sponsored by Civil Takeoffs, LLC; LHS Belle Tones (Amanda Brunt, Mika Haddock, Gabby Melvin) sponsored by Meredith Village Savings Bank; Martin, Lord & Osman Team (Joe Driscoll, Kristin Fields, Candace Steenebeke) sponsored by Martin, Lord & Osman, P.A.; The Three Wise Women (Brenda Bouton, Martha Clement, Alida Millham) sponsored by the Congregational Church of Laconia; LHS Key Club (Abby Bailey, Josh Chandler, Bryden Wright) sponsored by the Kiwanis Club of Laconia.

Also: BHS Spelling Three (Veronica Harris, Carol Lipshultz, Asia Merrill) sponsored by Marcia Hayward; the LHS Pica Print Proof Readers (Steve Bouffard, Cameron Gifford, Garret Shore) sponsored by Steve Hodgdon LHS Class of 1955; Gilford Rotary Team (Nancy Carsen, Tom Lacy, Chris Ray) sponsored by Gilford Rotary Club; LHS NHS Dipthong Scholars (Natalie Compton, Jackson Lawrence, Kayla Menard) sponsored by Dana S. Beane & Co. PC; Huot Careers in Education (Miranda Bushnell, Robin Friend, Taylor Sullivan) sponsored by Thom Francoeur-Allstate Insurance.

We have been very fortunate over the years to have a handful of corporate sponsors without whom the financial success of this event would not be possible. We would like to recognize these very generous donors: Belknap Landscape Company Inc., Meredith Village Savings Bank, Morgan Stanley Wealth Management, and F. André Paquette in Honor of Margaret Rose Paquette.

In addition to our Corporate and Team sponsors, we give thanks to the following donors who sponsored ads in our program or donated gifts-in-kind:

Advanced Orthopaedic Specialists, All My Life Jewelers, Janet D. Allison, American Eyecare, Applebee's, Beane Conference Center, Belknap County Sportsmen's Assn., Belknap Mill Quilter's Guild, Bianco Child & Family Services, Judy Bissonnette, Boulia-Gorrell Lumber Company, George E. and Barbara H. Brixner III, Michael & Janet Brough, Gloyd & Janet Calley, Capitol Center for the Arts, CBH Landscape Contractors, The Common Man, Contigiani's Catering Service, Corporate Images, Denoncourt, Waldron & Sullivan CPA, East Coast Welding, Edgewater Academy of Dance, The Ellis Family, Thom Francoeur - Allstate Insurance, Fratello's Ristorante Italiano, Funspot.

Also:, Claire Giguere, Gilford Hannaford, Granite State Credit Union, Florence Guilmett, The Hair Factory, Hart's Turkey Farm Restaurant, Hermit Woods Winery, HRO Plus, Hither Creek Press, Irwin Automotive Group, Kiwanis Club of Laconia, Laconia Lodge of Elks, Laconia Police Department, Lakes Region Builders & Remodelers Assn., Lakes Region Community College, Lakes Region Floral Studio, Laurent Overhead Door Systems, Paulette and Steve Loughlin, Malone, Dirubbo & Company, PC, Market Basket, Martin, Lord & Osman, PA, Atty. Scott D. McGuffin, Melcher & Prescott Insurance, NAPA Auto & Truck Parts, New Hampshire Ball Bearings, Ninety-Nine Restaurant.

Also: Normandin, Cheney & O'Neil, PLLC, O'dus LLC, Mary B. Orton, Patrick's Pub & Eatery, Pike Industries, Inc., Pizza Hut, Katherine Reardon, ReFresh Salon, Salome Family, Salon Amara, Shaw's Supermarket Gilford, Squam Lakes Science Center, Stafford Oil Company, Inc., Joni Stover, Tanger Outlet Center, Taylor Community, T-Bones, Tilton Trailer Rental, Travel Health of NH, Uno Chicago Grill, VISTA ShurFine Supermarket, Water Street Café, Wedbush Securities, John and Patricia Weeks, Whittemore Florist & Greenhouse, and Wilkinson-Beane-Simoneau-Paquette Funeral Home & Crematorium.

If anyone would like a copy of our 2015 Bee program, please contact us at 527-3533 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. We also wish to remind co

llege-bound students that our 2016 scholarship applications will be available by mid-January on our website: www.lrscholarship.org and also at the guidance department of our local high schools. The deadline is April 1, 2016. 

Paulette Loughlin, President

Joan Cormier, Executive Director

Lakes Region Scholarship Foundation

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Evil will be released if we lose compassion for all humanity

To The Daily Sun,

The recent tragic and horrific events in Paris have opened a door, or more appropriately stated, Pandora's box, igniting a firestorm of knee-jerk rhetoric and legislative action that does not represent lessons learned nor this democracy's greatness. Hastened by the medias barrage of coverage, particularly of the often-quick responses for political gain, we are entering into very dangerous game of chaos and confusion, not serving the common U.S. or global good.

Hysteria is not an option, nor is silence. Both accelerated pre-World War II thought and actions. We must heed the lessons of the past. We need clearer heads to calmly navigate this precipice in concert with our allies. As we observe the current GOP, or perhaps the anti-GOP candidates, wrestle each other for the farthest right position, we risk them pushing us all off the ledge. We the people must tether it back to balance, giving voice to better angels.

In this regard, both left and right of middle ground is a more hopeful dais.

Our school children know better the lessons taught having paraded them for the past two decades through memorials and monuments of those interred and exterminated.

The country I know has a wide berth as big as Ellis Island that brought my grandmother here, pregnant with my father, from their native Italy.
The church I know has arms open wide, filled with compassion, reaching into the local and world community for those who are hungry and tired. We welcome the stranger because more angels than not are among them.

We understand all too well the sleepless nights when our sons and daughters are deployed, honoring their choice to serve for an America where lessons learned were that from the "Greatest Generation" who brought the world back from the horrors of World War II.

While the noise moves us to the brink off the far right now, we cannot yield the ship. The consequences are too grave, the rhetoric too loud. Evil released will be by our own actions if we leave hope, love and compassion for all humanity in the box.

Sandra Ringelstein

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