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Banana boat

MR 340 race participants get ingenious with the available space on their boats in order to minimize the time they need to spend at the onshore check points. The racers set set off for St. Charles from Kaw Point Riverbank Park in Kansas City, Kan., on Tuesday.

Keeping the team together

Tom Young makes an anxious call in search for a tardy team member as his boat prepares to cast off from the shore at the beginning of the Missouri River 340 race in Kansas City, Kan., Tuesday.

Racing in the rain

Spring, Tx. resident and Missouri River 340 veteran Richard Miller soaks up the pre-race atmosphere an hour before the scheduled start at Kaw Point boat landing in Kansas City, Kan., on Tuesday. After an hour and a half postponement, the racers set off for St. Charles under overcast, but dry, skies.

Sporting a piece of history

Dick Brumley, Sid Stoffels, Tom Young, John Meyer, Arlen Beck and Tom Ronk wait for the beginning of the MR340 race from the hull of their Lewis and Clark expedition replica canoe on the Missouri River off of Kew Point in Kansas City, Kan., on Tuesday. Theirs is the largest team competing in the race this year.

Launching the race

The boat launch at Kaw Point Riverfront Park serves as the staging area for boaters competing in the Missouri River 340 race that begins in Kansas City, Kan., on Tuesday and ends three days later in St. Charles.

Pumping out the water

MU student Andy Bramman pumps rain water out of his canoe following several hours of thunderstorms on the morning of the MR 340 in Kansas City, Kan., on Tuesday.

Gathering for the launch

Missouri River 340 race participants, crew members and fans gather at the end of the rain-slicked Kew Point boat launch in Kansas City, Kan., on Tuesday.

Boats of all shapes and sizes

Missouri River 340 race participants and crew members prepare their vessels for the endurance race alongside the boat launch at Kaw Point in Kansas City, Ks., Tuesday.

'Grumpy old men'

"Grumpy Old Men" canoe team members Charlie Stewart and Richard Miller, both of Spring, Texas, test the waters off of Kaw Point in Kansas City, Kan., in the hours before the start of the Missouri River 340 race on Tuesday.

Tiger on their side

The plastic tiger adorning the bow of Eric Farris' kayak collects raindrops in the hours before the start of the 2009 Missouri River race at the waters edge in Kaw Point Riverbank Park in Kansas City, Kan., on Tuesday.

Mark Durrant

Socially connected

Larry G. Brown, Jim MacMillan, and Dianne Lynch

Paul Weber mug

Paul Weber

Preparing for the race

A handful of racers warm up before the start of the 2007 Missouri RIver 340 race at Kaw Point in Kansas City, Kan. This year’s event, which begins at 8 a.m. Tuesday, features a large increase in participants, with more than 500 racers entered.

Racers reach checkpoint

Participants in the Missouri River 340 make their way to Check Point 5 in Cooper's Landing on Wednesday evening. Many racers took a break here to fuel up on food and beverages before heading back out to the river.

Cami Ronchetto prepares for the MR340

Cami Ronchetto of Columbia stands with her two-person kayak "Jordan" on Saturday, three days before she embarks on the MR 340 race with partner Linda LaFontaine. The boat race takes participants from Kansas City to St. Louis via the Missouri River, and Ronchetto expects that it will take her tandem about 75 hours to complete the course.

Cami Ronchetto and her partner for the MR340

Kayaking partners Cami Ronchetto, left, and Linda LaFontaine sit in Ronchetto's garage among gear and supplies as they prepare for the upcoming 340 mile boat race from Kansas City to St. Louis. Ronchetto originally planned to participate in the race as a solo entrant, but recruited LaFontaine to the cause four months ago.

Officer receives ribbon

Victoria Craig pins the Ribbon of Meritorious Service onto her husband, Columbia Police Officer Chad Craig, during a ceremony.

Two officers receive award for meritorious service

Matt Hibler, left, accepts the Ribbon of Meritorious Service from Chief of Police Ken Burton on August 3, 2009. At the scene of a fire on May 20, Officers Hibler and Chad Craig performed CPR on Delbert Porter, until medical personnel arrived.

Tips sweeten the deal

Tips are an added bonus to Trey Aldridge's workday. Aldridge, an MU student, is working as a hot-dog vendor this summer so that he can support himself. "That's where my summer job comes (in) ... I decided I wanted to get a job to make extra money and stuff like that," Aldridge said.
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