The News-Review and Cow Creek Umpqua Tribe will sponsor the 43rd annual Douglas County Spelling Bee from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. April 18 at the Wildlife Safari’s Cheryl Ford Center.

A set of spelling words will appear on this page every week through March 28. The weekly word lists can also be accessed online at by entering “Spelling Bee” into the search field.

The county spelling bee champion will win a trophy and new laptop. Trophies and prizes will also be awarded through fourth place.

All public school, private school and home-schooled students in the fifth through eighth grades are invited to participate. Students wishing to enter elimination rounds in their district must sign up with their school’s spelling bee coordinator. Home-schooled students should contact the home school spelling bee coordinator at 541-679-1251.

The county spelling bee coordinator may be contacted at Questions regarding the weekly word lists may be addressed to or to The News-Review at 541-229-4328.


Violin — A bowed stringed instrument having four strings, a shallow body, a fingerboard without frets, and a curved bridge. “Reuben demonstrated his technical virtuosity on the violin when he auditioned for the string ensemble.”

Treadmill — A device operated by walking on an endless belt for the purpose of exercise. “Walking on a treadmill in his apartment was convenient, but Sam preferred to get his exercise outside, weather permitting.”

Prancer — A horse with a spirited gait. “Tracy’s horse is a prancer named Spunky.”

Galley — A ship or boat propelled by oars. “The restored 18th-century galley is on display in the harbor.”

Whisperer — A horse trainer who soothes unmanageable mounts by speaking softly to them. “The whisperer calmed the filly at the starting gate.”

Quartz — A mineral consisting of a silicon dioxide that occurs in crystals and, next to feldspar, is the commonest mineral. “Because it is so abundant, quartz is one of the first minerals many children learn to identify.”

Plundered — Took the goods of by force (as in war) or wrongfully. “The crosses bore the names of towns that the pirates plundered.”

Harpoon — A spear used in hunting large fish or whales. “Roger caught four fish with a harpoon today.”

Stifling — Producing suffocation or repression. “The stifling smell of cigar smoke killed Ashley’s appetite.”

Mischief — Action or conduct that annoys or irritates without causing or meaning to cause serious harm. “Hearing the puppy’s thumping and barking, Erica went to investigate the mischief he was creating.”

Cloverleaf — An interchange between two major highways that allows traffic to change from one to the other without requiring any left turns or crossings. “The construction of the cloverleaf at I-295 and Cooper Road is scheduled for completion in August.”

Quest — The action or an act or instance of searching; expedition, pursuit, venture. “With an uneasy heart, the prisoner set forth with his captors on a quest for treasure.”

Legislature — An organized body of persons having the authority to make laws. “Ellen served as a page for the legislature last year.”

Explosive — Of or relating to the act of violently expanding and bursting. “Witnesses told the arson investigator that two men ran from the side door of the warehouse moments before the explosive fire.”

Microphone — An instrument usually used to transmit or record speech or music. “If Glenna had not used a microphone, no one in the back of the theater would have been able to hear her lines.”

Haddock — An important food fish that is usually smaller than the common cod and has a black lateral line and a dark spot just behind the gills. “Dustin prefers fish sticks made of minced haddock.”

Taxiway — A usually paved strip on which an airplane can move at low speed along the ground. “Extremely anxious about flying, Dominic was relieved when the plane finally landed and moved down the taxiway to the arrival gate.”

Exhausting — Depriving wholly of strength, patience, or resources. “Robert’s exhausting exercise routine left him not only very tired but also very hungry.”

Clapboard — A narrow board that is usually thicker at one edge than the other and is used for weatherboarding outside walls. “Houses covered with clapboard require more exterior maintenance than do those veneered with brick.”

Congregation — An assembly of persons met for the worship of God and religious instruction. “When the service was over, the congregation gathered around the new minister.”

Minnow — A small fish common in gravelly streams and attaining a length of about three inches maximum. “If not eaten by other fish or caught for bait, the tiny minnow can live up to three years.”

Immense — Characterized by greatness in size or degree. “Wilbur’s portliness is a reflection of his immense appetite.”

Forgery — “The act of falsely or fraudulently making or altering a document. “Lorna is charged with two counts of check forgery.”

Vulture — Any of various large raptorial bird related to the hawks, eagles, and falcons but having weaker claws and a usually naked head and that subsist chiefly or entirely on the decaying flesh of dead animals. “The turkey vulture rarely gets credit for its help in removing unfortunate opossums and skunks from our roadways.”

Levy — Impose or collect by legal process or by authority. “The political candidate promised to levy no new taxes if he were elected.”

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