National Geographic President John M. Fahey, Jr., called the Bee "our favorite event of the whole year" and a "cornerstone of this organization's commitment to geography education."
Trebek commented on the impressive amount that the competitors knew about geography as he cautioned audience members not to mouth or say answers during the competition. "I have looked over the material, and I think that most of the time you will be wrong," he joked.
The other finalists competing today were Isaiah P. Hess of Colorado, Aaron Kiersh of Connecticut, Ryan J. Felix of the Department of Defense Schools, Benjamin S. Detrixhe of Kansas, Nathaniel R. Mattison of New York, Alexander Taylor Smith of North Carolina, and John T. Rice of North Dakota.
The 2002 National Geographic Bee finals air on the National Geographic Channel in the United States at 6 p.m. ET/3 p.m. PT, May 22, 2002. The finals will air later on public television stations, produced by Maryland Public Television. Check local listings for details.
This year's Bee was dedicated to Joe Ferguson and Ann Judge, National Geographic staff members who were killed on September 11.
Sample questions from this year's National Geographic Bee finals (answers follow):
1) The Churchill, Slave, and Peace Rivers are in what country?
2) Name the two remaining constituent republics of Yugoslavia.
3) Name the only country in Southeast Asia not colonized by a European power.
4) Name the ethnically distinct region of northern France that was settled by Celtic people.
5) Lake Assad, created by a major hydroelectric dam, is located on which river?
6) Which country administered Papua New Guinea prior to its independence in 1975?
7) St. Petersburg is located on the delta of the Neva River where it empties into what gulf?
8) What term describes the drainage pattern on a cinder cone volcano such as Mount Etna?
9) On May 20, East Timor officially gained independence after claiming sovereignty from Indonesia since 1975. Name the capital of this new country.
10) Pakistan's largest province has the country's smallest provincial population. Name this province.
Answers: 1. Canada. 2. Serbia and Montenegro. 3. Thailand. 4. Brittany. 5. The Euphrates. 6. Australia. 7. The Gulf of Finland. 8. Radial. 9. Dili. 10. Baluchistan.
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