Emmy Award-winning Tom Bergeron (“Dancing with the Stars,” “America’s Funniest Home Videos”) hosts live television coverage of the final championship rounds of “The 2009 Scripps National Spelling Bee,” THURSDAY, MAY 28 (8:00-10:00 p.m., ET), live from Washington, DC, as 293 spellers from around the world compete. Chris McKendry (“SportsCenter”) will host semifinal rounds live earlier in the day on ESPN, which has televised the Bee since 1994. ESPN’s live telecast (simulcast on ESPN360.com) is scheduled for 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m., ET. ESPN360.com will provide coverage of Round Three of the preliminaries from 1:15 – 6:15 p.m., ET on Wednesday, May 27. ESPN sideline reporter Erin Andrews returns to be a correspondent for both the ABC and ESPN broadcasts.
Tom Bergeron is a true television MVP and, when “Dancing with the Stars” is on the air, he has the most primetime hours on TV of any host. In addition to hosting “DWTS” and “AFHV” on ABC, he is a special correspondent for “Good Morning America,” and his past hosting duties have also included the TV stalwarts the “Miss America Pageant,” “The 33rd Annual Daytime Emmy Awards” and “Hollywood Squares.” Bergeron is also the author of the new memoir, “I’m Hosting as Fast as I Can!”
“SportsCenter” anchor Chris McKendry returns to host the ESPN portion of the broadcast again this year. McKendry has served as an anchor for “SportsCenter,” ESPN’s flagship news and information program, since joining the network in July 1996. She has also worked on a variety of other assignments, such as hosting ESPN’s coverage of X Games and sideline reporting for ESPN, ESPN2 and ABC Sports’ telecasts of the 1999 FIFA Women’s World Cup.
Correspondent Erin Andrews has reported for many ESPN broadcasts since joining the network in 2004, including coverage of Major League Baseball, the Little League World Series, college football, college basketball, College World Series, NHL and others.
The Scripps National Spelling Bee, the nation’s largest and longest running educational promotion, is administered on a not-for-profit basis by the E.W. Scripps Company and 287 local sponsors. The majority of local spelling bee sponsors are daily and weekly newspapers. The purpose of the Scripps National Spelling Bee is to help students improve spelling, increase vocabularies, learn concepts and develop correct English usage that will help them all of their lives.
About 293 champion spellers, ranging in age from 9 to 15, will be competing this year for the National Spelling Bee Championship. Spellers participating in the national competition qualify by winning locally sponsored spelling bees in their home communities.
The Scripps National Spelling Bee, which is held each year in Washington DC, will begin on Tuesday May 26, featuring top spellers from across the U.S. as well as competitors from Guam, U.S. Virgin Islands, American Samoa, Puerto Rico, Jamaica, The Bahamas, Canada, New Zealand, Ghana, South Korea, students from U.S. Defense and State Department schools in Europe and students from American and international schools in China. Real-time results for all segments of competition are provided via the Internet at the Bee’s official website, www.spellingbee.com.
“The 2009 Scripps National Spelling Bee” is a production of ESPN, in association with ABC Entertainment. The executive producer is Jed Drake, and the director is Doug Holmes. The producer is David Winner and the coordinating producer is Tim Weinkauf.