On May 30, ESPN2 will air the most important sporting event of the year: The Scripps National Spelling Bee. If you’re unfamiliar, fear not! It is never too late to board the Bee train. This year, why not throw a Super Bowl-level Spelling Bee party?! Here are some ways you can properly honor the word nerd Olympics:
Before the Bee begins, get into the spelling spirit and watch the 2002 documentary Spellbound. Sure, it is over a decade old, but the suspense is TIMELESS. You’ll learn everything you need to know about America’s (should-be) favorite pastime: the relentless preparation of the contestants; the creative study techniques; the try-out process and what a musical robot sounds like.
START A BETTING POOL
Research the contestants and create a wager board. Whoever picks the winning speller buys everyone Doritos Locos Tacos. Or wins a dictionary. Or whatever prize you and your friends deem appropriate. Hold off on betting family heirlooms, pets, college funds, et cetera.
While you watch the Bee, get a game of Scrabble going. But heighten the pressure and use a timer for each turn. And be sure to use the “you’re out!” Bee bell. If someone decides to challenge a spelling or misspells a word, hit that bell. You’ll immediately experience the EXACT pressure and defeat that the Bee contestants experience when they hear that fateful DING! while on national television. You will feel like the wind was knocked out of you. While playing Scrabble.
ATTEMPT TO SPELL THE WORDS
Take turns trying to spell the 20-syllable words. ESPN2 flashes the word in question on the screen for the viewers at home, so make each party guest stand next to the TV to prevent peeking. The first person to get a word right gets to wear the figurative (or literal, if that’s your thing) “smartest person in the clique” crown until next year.
Offering snacks at a party is non-negotiable. What you choose to serve is up to you. If you’re a theme stickler, go ahead and serve Honeycomb cereal or alphabet soup. Personally, I love Bagel Bites and I don’t need a theme to justify making them. Cannot go wrong with pizza atop a tiny bagel.
SERIOUSLY, JUST WATCH IT
You don’t need activities or games while it is on to be entertained. You’ll be on the edge of your seat. And you’ll learn some $1,000 words. Warning: don’t use too many in one place because you’ll sound like you had your brain replaced with a thesaurus. Or watched the Scripps Bee. Moderation is key!