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Charlotte winners (l-r): first runner-up Adrija Rukmini, regional champ Siyona Mishra, second runner-up Aryan Sreshta, and Spelling Bee founder Rahul Walia.

Continuing its quest for the best speller in the community, the 2015 MetLife South Asian Spelling Bee traveled to Atlanta July 11 and Charlotte July 12, a Touchdown Media press release reported. MetLife, a leading global provider of life insurance, annuities, employee benefits and asset management, is serving as the event’s title sponsor for the seventh consecutive year.

Atlanta was abuzz once again this year with a number of spellers participating for a shot at the finals. This year also marked the first time in Charlotte that an 8 year old ended up qualifying for the finals.

“In almost every city, we are seeing a majority of new talent and fresh faces, which is testimony to the fact that this brain sport is close to the community. This year I’m delighted to see two 8 year olds already in the finals,” said Rahul Walia, founder of the South Asian Spelling Bee, in a Touchdown Media press release.

In Atlanta, Dev Jaiswal was the regional champ. Vishal Thakwani was the first runner-up, and Lipika Narisetti was the second runner-up. Thakwani resides in the country of Ghana and flew in specially to participate at the regionals.

In Charlotte, Siyona Mishra came out on top as the regional champ. Adrija Rukmini was the first runner-up, while Aryan Sreshta was the second runner-up.

The winners received cash prizes of $500, $300 and $200, respectively.

Along with MetLife, food brand Kawan came on board as a sponsor for the event. As always, SONY Entertainment Television Asia was the exclusive broadcast partner for the MetLife South Asian Spelling Bee and will be airing the series across 120 countries.

Children up to 14 years of age are eligible to participate, and the contest even saw spellers as young as 6 years old compete and make it past a few rounds.

There are two more cities on the anvil. For more information and to register your child, please visit: www.SouthAsianSpellingBee.com.

The top two winners plus one parent each from every city will be given an all-expenses-paid trip to New Jersey on Aug. 14 for the finals.

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