Final Reflections and Thanks

I’d like to thank everyone who made my trip to the Scripps National Spelling Bee possible. It was a great experience that I will never forget. I made a lot of new friends and had a great time meeting people of other cultures and countries.
First, I’d like to thank God for getting me there and giving me the knowledge and wisdom necessary to participate in the competition. I’d also like to thank my teachers and administrators who have encouraged me throughout the years in school at Springmore Elementary and Crest Middle. I would like to thank the Cleveland County School Board Members for all of their encouragement, and for enrolling my school as a part of the competition.
I would like to give a very big thank you to my sponsor, The Shelby Star, for covering all of the expenses necessary for my trip. There is absolutely no way that I would have been able to go without all of The Star’s generosity and encouragement. The members at my church, Boiling Springs Baptist, and my youth group, especially, have also been incredibly supportive. I am so thankful for all of their collective prayers. Also, I definitely could not have done this without my family.
There were even some people that I didn’t know, who have been incredibly complementary of my achievements, and I could never have made it as far as I did without their help. One of those was Lori Mull’s 4th grade class from First Baptist Christian School in Stuart, Florida. After I completed the first ESPN3 round, the class Facetimed me, cheering me on and wishing me luck.

Last, but certainly not least, I would like to thank all of the Scripps National Spelling Bee officials, staff, and competitors for making this event such an amazing and memorable opportunity. I wish that I could go back next year, but I am incredibly thankful that I had the chance to experience the unique opportunity of Bee Week in Washington, DC.
Thomas Manning
#Speller177 Scripps National Spelling Bee 2014



“I Wish I Had One More Week Here”

IMG_0568Thanks to everyone who made my trip and experience at DC possible! I cannot believe it is over. Today was a day to celebrate. We explored DC, walked quite a bit, saw the Capitol and Washington Monument, and enjoyed several museums including the International Spy Museum. IMG_0584

When we returned, we got in a small amount of rest before heading to the Award’s Banquet which celebrated all the participants in this year’s Bee. We had an amazing meal, saw TV highlights and coverage of this year’s Bee, and heard speeches from the winners (Sriram J. Hathwar,Ansun Sujoe), and a keynote address from Sameer Mishra.IMG_0587
We had an after-party where everyone danced, collected each other’s autographs, and said their farewells. The fact that I went up and asked Sriram Hathwar, one of the two co-champions of the National Spelling Bee, for his autograph and also received his phone number and email address is pretty cool! When Ansun wanted my autograph, well that was pretty awesome too.

Thomas Manning & 2014 Co-Champion of the Scripps National Spelling Bee Sriram J. Hathwar

Thomas Manning & 2014 Co-Champion of the Scripps National Spelling Bee Sriram J. Hathwar

Thomas giving an autograph to 2014 Co-Champ Ansun Sujoe

Thomas giving an autograph to 2014 Co-Champ Ansun Sujoe

When I get settled back in at home in Boiling Springs this weekend, I’ll share my final thoughts.

Thank you all again for taking this journey with me.

Thomas with 2000 Champ George Thampy & 1999 Champ Nupur Lala

Thomas with 2000 Champ George Thampy & 1999 Champ Nupur Lala

Crest Middle School, Boiling Springs, NC
Cleveland County Schools

The Final Day: The Beginning

As the spellers and their families of this historic Spelling Bee enjoy the final day in the DC area, all will be taking home memories of people met, places seen, and words spelled (and misspelled). All spellers in this competition are champions, especially when you remember that out of 11 million participants (in over 60,000 competitions) only 281 made it this far. All should be applauded and celebrated. 10352398_762636870442583_2325744596121705268_n

Today, that celebration begins as tours of DC landmarks will take place throughout the day. Tonight all spellers and families will enjoy a banquet in honor of the their achievements, and an after party dance until midnight. thomas-bee12

Tomorrow, like so many others, Thomas and I will head home realizing that the week, this Bee, this unique opportunity would have never happened without the support of so many people. Those particular acknowledgements will come when we return home this weekend.

Now it is time to explore DC and hopefully the International Spy Museum.

Noel T. Manning II

#speller177 #tcubemanning

It’s almost time

A little over an hour away before the 12 spellers (from an original field of 11million spellers across the world) hit this stage for a chance at over $30,000. Talk about pre-game jitters kicking in.

We are truly impressed by all the people we’ve met and stories we’ll have to tell.

Spell well final 12, spell well.

Watch live on Espn at 8pm.