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Ninety-three high school students participated in the 59th annual Missouri Electric Youth Tour to Washington, D.C., June 13-19. Local delegates sponsored by Cuivre River Electric Cooperative (CREC) were Ella Murphy, Kaitlyn Benesek, and Reese Ramler, all of Liberty High School; Madelyn Brune, Clopton High School; Josie Hoskins, Troy Buchanan High School; and Jamie Jarvis, Jarvis Homeschool.

Youth Tour delegates from CREC
Cuivre River Electric Cooperative sponsored six students to attend the National Youth Tour Conference June 13-19 in Washington, D.C. Pictured, from left, standing in front of the U.S. Capitol Building are Reese Ramler (Liberty High School), Ella Murphy (Liberty High School), Josie Hoskins (Troy Buchanan High School), Jamie Jarvis (Jarvis Homeschool), Madelyn Brune (Clopton High School) and Kaitlyn Benesek (Liberty High School).

After two years of virtual tours, the Youth Tour headed back to Washington this year. The seven-day tour provides an action-filled week for high school students, offering them opportunities to learn firsthand what it is like to be involved in politics, leadership positions, community service and today’s pressing issues.

“The Youth Tour is the highlight of the summer for many students and we’re proud to send our best and brightest to our nation's capital to participate,” said Chris Massman, vice president of member services for the Association of Missouri Electric Cooperatives. Highlights of the trip include the young people visiting with representatives from their congressional districts, touring monuments, the Smithsonian Institution’s museums, Arlington National Cemetery and for the first time, touring the International Spy Museum. The group also took a sightseeing and dance cruise on the Potomac River one evening.

Other events of the week included participation in the Electric Youth Day, during which a special program coordinated by the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association brought together over 1,000 Youth Tour delegates from across the United States. The delegates enjoyed featured speeches by government leaders and motivational speakers, such as Mike Schlappi, an inspiring four-time Paralympic medalist and two-time world wheelchair basketball champion.

The annual Youth Tour contest is open to students who live and attend school in Cuivre River Electric’s general service area, or who have CREC service in their homes. For more information about the Youth Tour program, contact Tim Schmidt at 800-392-3709, ext. 4837 or by email at