Serrao advances to Scripps National Spelling Bee in Washington, D.C.

Christopher Serrao, Champion of the Regional Spelling BeeLehigh Valley, Pa. (March 28, 2019) - Months of studying paid off for Christopher Serrao, the winner of the fourth annual Discover Lehigh Valley® Regional Spelling Bee presented by Service Electric Cable TV , held Wednesday evening at Northampton Community College’s Lipkin Theatre. Serrao, a student at Readington Middle School in Hunterdon County, was also crowned champion of the 2017 and 2018 Regional Bees. Strong spelling runs in the family as his sister, Danielle, was the champion of the 2016 Regional Bee. 

Aashveen Randhawa of Exeter Township Junior High School was this year’s runner-up.

Fifty-three qualifying students from across eight counties (Berks, Bucks, Lehigh, Northampton, and Montgomery in Pennsylvania and Hunterdon, Morris, and Warren in New Jersey) competed in over three hours of intense competition. This year’s winning word was colloid, defined as a homogeneous noncrystalline substance consisting of large molecules or ultramicroscopic particles of one substance dispersed through a second substance.

Serrao will now move on to the Scripps National Spelling Bee in Washington D.C. for his third appearance, after making it to the final rounds of the 2018 national event. 

Christopher Serrao, Champion of the Regional Spelling BeeThe Discover Lehigh Valley® Spelling Bee welcomed children in grades 4 - 8 from a 10-county region in eastern Pennsylvania and wester New Jersey. Approximately 25,000 students from hundreds of schools throughout this region participated in spelling bees throughout the fall and early winter to qualify for regional rounds including a preliminary round held in February. Following the preliminary round, the pool of contestants was narrowed from 110 qualifying students to 53 finalists who showed their skills in the Regional Final. 

“We’re thrilled to be able to support the educational feats of these students,” said Kaitie Burger, Content & Communications Manager for Discover Lehigh Valley. “This year, we were excited to be to expand coverage of the Regional Spelling Bee yet again, giving even more students the chance to vie for a spot in the National Bee.”

The 2019 Regional Spelling Bee was coordinated by Jennifer Kelly. Denise L. Smith of the State Theatre for the Center Arts served as pronouncer. Danielle Serrao, former Regional Spelling Bee Champion, assisted throughout the evening.

Judges for the 2019 Regional Spelling Bee included Christopher P. Hoenscheid of George Wolf and Moore Elementary Schools and Jody Higgins of the Memorial School. 

This year’s event was generously supported by Service Electric Cable TV, First Commonwealth Federal Credit Union, Northampton Community College, the State Theatre Center for the Arts, Crayola, Just Born Inc., EBC Printing, the Lehigh Valley International Airport, Colebrookdale Railroad, Yocco’s Hot Dogs, and Taps Tavern.

Editor’s Note: A photo of Christopher Serrao, as well as a list of all participating finalists is available to download here

About Discover Lehigh Valley®
Established in 1984, Discover Lehigh Valley® makes Lehigh and Northampton counties a premier destination through marketing and image building that increases the number of visitors, the number of nights they stay, and the number of things they do in the region.

Discover Lehigh Valley’s official visitor website and blog,, keeps locals and visitors abreast of all things happening in the region. Visitors can explore things to do, upcoming events, themed itineraries, and hotel packages. Compelling photography and videos, brochures, and detailed visitor information make the sites effective trip-planning tools. Along with Discover Lehigh Valley’s social media channels, the online platforms communicate directly with consumers. Travelers can also call and stop into one of the many visitor centers for additional information.