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Hannibal Courier - Post - Hannibal, MO
  • New Tom, Becky look forward to meeting people

  • After receiving congratulatory hugs from family and friends Friday, July 4, John Maune and Riley Stevenson paused to consider what they expect to enjoy most as Hannibal’s new Tom and Becky for 2014-2015.
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  • After receiving congratulatory hugs from family and friends Friday, July 4, John Maune and Riley Stevenson paused to consider what they expect to enjoy most as Hannibal’s new Tom and Becky for 2014-2015.
    “I look forward to meeting new people and traveling,” Riley said. She is the daughter of Kevin and Rhonda Stevenson.
    John, the son of Neil and Christina Maune, said he is “most looking forward to strolling around and having a great year.”
    The contest has already benefited him, John added. “I used to be embarrassed, but thanks to Tom and Becky (contest), I got over it.”
    John said as he prepared for the contest, the engagement scene was the most difficult thing to learn.
    Riley said the most difficult part of preparing for the contest was remembering her speech for the pageant and learning the answers to all the questions.
    The Hannibal Area Chamber of Commerce Tom and Becky Pageant was at noon Friday in Central Park, just after the Fourth of July parade.
    Tom and Becky Coordinator Melissa Cummins said John and Riley’s activities during the next year will include traveling in June 2015 to visit Dr. Cindy Lovell and the Mark Twain House in Hartford, Conn., when it has Tom Sawyer Days.
    Although John and Riley are Hannibal’s official good will ambassadors, all 10 Tom and Becky finalists will serve all year.
    The others are Conner Bross, son of Mike and Kim Bross; Mason Jones, son of Joelle Jones and Charles Jones; Jordan Schafer, son of Josh and J'Nelle Lee; Jace Tischer, son of Darell and Lori Tischer; Danielle Behl, daughter of Danny and LaRhonda Behl; Lillie Ford, daughter of Chad and Leigh Ford; Bailey Meyer, daughter of Kurt and Shannan Meyer; and Claire Thomas, daughter of David and Rebecca Thomas.
    During the pageant, retiring Tom and Becky Nathan Lewton and Ashlyn Nichols presented an amusing skit – told in nursery rhyme - to share their experiences.
    This year’s 10 finalists then spoke to the dense crowd in Central Park, mostly thanking people who had helped them prepare for the contest.
    Some quoted Mark Twain, such as Lillie Ford, who quoting Twain’s statement about the two important days in your life, “the day you are born and the day you find out why.” Lillie also quoted the Bible, “Everything is possible to those who believe.”
    Bailey Meyer quoted Twain: “I was seldom able to see an opportunity until it ceased to be one.”
    Danielle Behl’s thanks included her little brother, “who knows the engagement scene by heart.”
    Page 2 of 2 - Riley Stevenson said it was an honor to be included in the group of Tom and Becky ambassadors.
    Claire Thomas thanked God and also several people for spending countless hours helping her study.
    When the Tom finalists took their turns on stage, John Maune said “I’m here to bring Tom Sawyer to life,” and he dedicated his year to his family’s exchange student, Santiago Viteri.
    Conner Bross’ thanks included his grandfather, the late Harold Crane, and said, “This year’s for you, Pa Pa.”
    Mason Jones appreciated his mom for “helping me study and encouraging me to be in the program.”
    Jordan Schafer’s appreciation included the Hannibal Chamber of Commerce.
    Jace Tischer thanked his parents, four sisters and Grandma Betty Hallows (who made his outfit). He closed with the Twain quote: “It’s better to keep you mouth shut and appear stupid than to open it and remove all doubt.”
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     

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