Poet, professor, and pilgrim [Photo]

After completing eight trips to Mount Athos, a Greek peninsula and pilgrimage site for Orthodox Christians, Scott Cairns has gradually learned to assimilate the monk's use of self-denial — a skill monks use to enhance their spiritual lives — into his own life.

Generations gather for change [Slideshow]

Barack Obama’s rally on Thursday, Oct. 30, 2008, at the Mel Carnahan Quandrangle brought people from many locations and many generations. Among the voices in the crowd of 40,000 were grandparents visting from Canada and students from Rock Bridge High School.

No to Obama [Photo]

Lauren Stewart, left, confronts anti-Obama protesters at Speakers Circle.

Obama roots for Kansas [Photo]

Lauren Stewart, right, argues with anti-Obama protesters at Speakers Circle at MU before Obama's speech on Thursday night.

No to Obama [Photo]

Brett Dinkins shouts during a protest at Speakers Circle before a rally for Sen. Barack Obama at Mel Carnahan Quadrangle at MU.

Hold me higher [Photo]

Father and son Anthony and Brenden James wait among the crowd for the Barack Obama rally on Thursday.

A family outing [Photo]

From left, Makenna Martin, Kim Martin, Delaney Martin and Annie Smith wait for the rally for Barack Obama to begin on Thursday at Carnahan Quadrangle at MU. Kim Martin is the mother of Makenna and Delaney, and the girls grandparents were visiting from Canada.

Obama waves to crowd before MU speech [Photo]

Senator Barack Obama waves to a cheering crowd on MU's Carnahan Quadrangle as he prepares to address them.

Obama greets supporters as he enters Carnahan Quadrangle [Photo]

Obama greets supporters as he enters Carnahan Quadrangle at MU. He urged voters to help him in his campaign during the final days of the race.

Barb Maddex snaps a photo at the Obama rally [Photo]

Columbia resident Barb Maddex snaps a photo at the "Change We Need" rally on Thursday.

Obama addressed health care at the MU rally [Photo]

Obama addressed health care issues during a rally at MU and told the crowd that he envisioned better access to health insurance for everyone, including young people.

The crowd at the Obama rally at MU [Photo]

Obama onstage in front of MU's Jesse Hall.

Obama at the MU rally on Thursday night [Photo]

Obama speaks at MU.

Jay Nixon introduces Obama at the MU rally [Photo]

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Jay Nixon greets a crowd of 40,000 as he steps on stage to speak at the "Change We Need" rally at MU. Nixon introduced Obama.

Obama pauses during Thursday's rally at MU [Photo]

Obama pauses during the rally at Carnahan Quadrangle.

Obama at Thursday's MU rally [Photo]

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., speaks at a rally at Carnahan Quadrangle at MU in Columbia, Mo. The crowd started filling up the area at 7:30 p.m. Thursday.

Rock Bridge football player Tedder Easton [Photo]

Senior Tedder Easton will play his final football game for Rock Bridge tonight.

Obama visits MU [Video]

An estimated 40,000 people came to hear Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama speak at MU on Thursday. Obama's speech lasted for 33 minutes and went over a diverse array of topics including the economy, health care and Iraq.

Baylor quarterback Robert Griffin [Photo]

Baylor quarterback Robert Griffin, a 6-foot-3 freshman, finished third at the NCAA Outdoor Championships in the 400-meter hurdles. The Missouri defense will have to match Griffin's speed Saturday afternoon in Waco, Texas.

Families come to see Obama [Photo]

Carrie Peter, 41, poses with her daughter Katrina, 6, at Sen. Barack Obama's rally at MU on Thursday. Peter said she thought it was important to bring her daughter from their home in Jefferson City to see the candidate during this historic election.