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Residents applaud music ensemble

Barbara Hawkins and Charles Pinney applaud at the conclusion of song by the MU Bassoon Ensemble at the Boone Landing Reitrement Center Monday evening. The ensemble played an hours worth of classic Christmas carols that residents could sing along to.

MU men's basketball player Jarrett Sutton

Missouri's Jarrett Sutton, right, moves into position during the last few minutes of the Tigers' victory against California on Sunday at Mizzou Arena. Sutton tried but failed to walk on to the Missouri men's basketball team as a freshmen last season. This season he earned a spot on the Tigers' roster.

Bassoon ensemble entertains retirement home

The MU Bassoon Ensemble, directed by Rod Ackman, performed a variety of Christmas songs for residents at the Boone Landing Retirement Center on Monday. Ackman has been conducting the Ensemble since the fall of 2007.

Hickman basketball player Marcus Whitt

Hickman sophomore Marcus Whitt, left, takes the ball past Poplar Bluff's Chris Kilgore in Sunday's game at the Norm Stewart Classic.

MU's DeMarre Carroll vs. California

Missouri forward DeMarre Carroll takes the ball past California's Jorge Gutierrez, left, and Harper Kamp in the first half of Sunday's victory at Mizzou Arena.

Separating mail

Alan Austene separates mail. He has seen a growth spurt in the past few years, with mailboxes and stops becoming more frequent on his mail route.

Mail drop

Alan Austene drops off mail on Academy Road. He uses his own vehicle to zigzag on and off dirt roads throughout Hallsville.

On his mail route

Alan Austene drives along Kemper Road during his mail route. He and two fellow mail carriers deliver to Hallsville's 1,353 mailboxes.

Delivering mail and jokes

Alan Austene jokes with Sara Crane and Deanna Rowland as he delivers mail at Hallsville Elementary School.

1,353 mailboxes and counting

Alan Austene, a Hallsville postal worker for 32 years, loads his car for deliveries. Austene's route takes him an average of 8 1/2 hours and 64 miles through the roads surrounding Hallsville.

Making room for mail

Alan Austene makes room in his car for mail to be delivered. His route takes him past farmland and horses and through newer subdivisions that have popped up over the years.

Family finds perfect tree

Clay Stem and his sons, Chase and Grady, prepare to take home their Christmas tree after selecting the perfect one at Log Providence Pines Tree Farm on Friday. The entire family helped select, cut and carry the tree to the cashier's stand.

Log Providence Farms celebrates its past

Dean Fitzgerald owns Log Providence Pines, a Christmas tree farm south of Columbia. Dean and his wife, Diane, have owned the farm for more than 20 years, but this will be his last year. The farm lets families find and cut their own tree, sold by the foot.

Daniel P. Mehan mug

Daniel P. Mehan is the president and CEO of the Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry

Black & gold (& green)

MU pre-med seniors Daniel Lyons, left, and Jack Short are the co-founders of Factory Green Inc., an environmentally friendly clothing and housewares company.

Sooners claim 2008 Big 12 crown

Oklahoma celebrates its victory over Missouri on Dec. 6 in the Big 12 Conference championship game at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City.

Sooners celebrate

Oklahoma players celebrate an interception on Dec. 6 in the Big 12 Conference championship game at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City.

Daniel recovers ball

Missouri quarterback Chase Daniel bobbles the ball but keeps possession against Oklahoma on Dec. 6 in the Big 12 Conference championship game at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City.

Gang tackle

Missouri defenders bring down Oklahoma's Ryan Broyles on Dec. 6 in the Big 12 Conference championship game at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City.

MU's Tommy Saunders

Oklahoma defenders pull down Missouri receiver Tommy Saunders on Dec. 6 in the Big 12 Conference championship game at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City.
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