Knights of Columbus Annual Regional Catholic Geography Bee
NOTE: Council #29 regretfully announces the cancellation the 2020 Geography Bee, out of an abundance of caution regarding COVID-19 and in accordance with governmental and diocesan recommendations for such events. We apologize for this, and look forward to bringing back the Bee next year.
Each year, McGivney Council #29 of the Knights of Columbus invites each Catholic middle/intermediate school in a region of southwestern Connecticut to nominate three students currently in fourth through eighth grade to participate in a Catholic geography bee.
The next bee will be in March, 2021.
Council #29 is blessed to have St. Joseph Parish in Danbury as its home parish, and St. Joseph School gym as the site for the bee.
- To serve the Knights' mission to support Catholic education and youth, by showcasing and rewarding academic achievement in our Catholic schools.
- To serve the Knights' mission to strengthen the Church and foster growth in faith, by celebrating and encouraging knowledge of God's creation and the people and resources He arrayed across it.
- To foster awareness of Catholic contributions to society and history by including some specifically-Catholic content, such as the Catholic origins of some place names, holy sites, famous Catholics from particular places, etc.
- To provide for each school's top geography students to compete at an inter-scholastic level without being blocked by e.g. a weed-out test.
- To acquaint our area's Catholic high school and some academically-strong members of the future generation of high-school students with each other. (In recent years, Immaculate High School has been represented on our judges panel, and has provided gifts and awards for participants.)
- To reinforce to our youth that their educational achievement fostered by family and faculty is also valued by the community at large.
How the Bee Runs
The bee is organized into "rounds". In each round, each participant answers one question about world geography, North American geography, or regional geography. All questions are open-answer, not multiple-choice. Each round is a "speaking round" or a "writing round".
In each speaking round, much like a spelling bee, each participant in turn gets his own question, to answer correctly in order to remain in the bee. However each participant is given "another chance", so the first time a participant misses a speaking question, he uses up this "chance" and remains in the bee. So participants generally remain in the bee until missing two speaking questions. The bee continues until all but one participant have been eliminated.
A unique feature of our bee is writing rounds which provide an opportunity to win yet another chance, to cancel another later speaking miss. In a writing round, all remaining participants write an answer at the same time to a single question like Name as many countries with Baltic Sea shorelines as you can. Each writing question specifies both a time limit and how the best answer will be determined, such as the most correct countries without naming any incorrect ones. Whoever writes the best answer wins another chance. Participants may accumulate chances in this way.
Links to More Information
For invited schools
For nominated students
Further details about how the bee runs
Sample Media Coverage
Bethel Patch 2019 , Fairfield County Catholic 2017 , Danbury News-Times 2014 , Newtown's HamletHub 2014 , Knightline 2014 (KofC leadership news, p. 6, top-right) .
The bee began in 2011 crowning one champion within the city of Danbury, then grew to present awards to three top finishers in a larger region. Awards currently include trophies, certificates, and monetary awards from the Knights and prizes from Immaculate High School to the student, and a trophy to the school.
- William Tucker, Grade 7, St. Mary School, Bethel
- Nicholas Paris, Grade 7, St. Mary School, Bethel
- Jonathan Voskov, Grade 7, St. Rose of Lima School, Newtown
- William Tucker, Grade 6, St. Mary School, Bethel
- William Doran, Grade 8, St. Joseph School, Danbury
- Caroline Stanton, Grade 6, St. Joseph School, Danbury
- William Doran, Grade 7, St. Joseph School, Danbury
- Zachary Meyerson, Grade 8, St. Gregory the Great School, Danbury
- Grace Garvey, Grade 8, St. Mary School, Bethel
- Zachary Meyerson, Grade 7, St. Gregory the Great School, Danbury
- Marcel Melendez, Grade 7, Greenwich Catholic School, Greenwich
- Avery Simoneau, Grade 7, St. Mary School, Ridgefield
- Reggie Stuhr, Grade 6, St. Mary School, Ridgefield
- Peter Burg, Grade 6, St. Gregory the Great School, Danbury
- Cameron Reichenbach, Grade 6, St. Rose of Lima School, Newtown
- Colman Tokar, Grade 6, St. Rose of Lima School, Newtown
- Veronica Galban, Grade 8, St. Mary School, Ridgefield
- Cooper Swenson, Grade 7, St. Gregory the Great School, Danbury
- Colm Doherty, Grade 8, St. Joseph School, Danbury
- Colman Tokar, Grade 5, St. Rose of Lima School, Newtown
- Charlie Stuhr, Grade 5, St. Mary School, Ridgefield
- Freddy Rio, Grade 7, St. Mary School, Ridgefield
- Charles Asetta, Grade 5, St. Rose of Lima School, Newtown
- Kelly Martella, Grade 7, St. Mary School, Ridgefield
- Colm Doherty, Grade 6, St. Joseph School