The first two rounds of the Scripps National Spelling Bee are in the books, and the four local spellers representing San Diego and Imperial County have advanced to round 3.
The bee got underway at a resort outside Washington D.C. Tuesday with more than 500 spellers, the most ever.
First, they took a written test, then they started the grueling competition spelling words for the judges.
NingXin Sun from Mesa Verde Middle School in Rancho Penasquitos correctly spelled the word "compositae."
Ethan Anderson of Calvin Christian School in Escondido advanced by spelling "puparium," and Kevin Luo from San Diego also made it to the third round by correctly spelling "arriccio."
El Centro's Nathan Ostermann, representing the Imperial County Office of Education, spelled "metronome" without error.
The third round got underway Wednesday at 5 a.m. PT. The competition will be live on ESPN 3.
The spelling bee winner will be crowned Thursday after a two-part final round.