As the last few Olympic events played out in Vancouver over the weekend, a clutch of battle-ready contestants gathered in the West Loop for a fierce competition of their own: West End’s second annual spelling bee, featuring a $1,000 grand prize. There was agony, elation, beer in boots, and a caller clad in a bumblebee costume—and our photographer was there to capture the contest in all its glory, G-L-O-R-Y, glory. Bonus: Read more about West End and the 99 other watering holes that made our list of the area’s 100 best bars.

Photography by Megan Dodge