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President Arrives in Springfield

President Bush arrived in Springfield tonight. At the airport, the president gave a volunteer award to a Springfield man. KSMU's Missy Shelton was at the airport last night. She reports on the president's arrival, the man who received the award and plans by Peace Network of the Ozarks to protest the president's rally Friday.

That was the sound of Air Force One touching down at the Springfield-Branson National Airport Thursday night.

As President Bush stepped off the plane a few minutes before 7, members of the secret service were waiting...but so were eight people who cheered when the president emerged from the plane.

Among the eight people who shook hands with the president were a Missouri State University student, an exterminator, and an attorney.

The last local person to meet the president before he entered his limousine was Dennis Jones.

Jones received the President's Volunteer Service Award for his work with the Springfield chapter of SCORE, an organization that provides assistance to small businesses.

KSMU caught up with Jones shortly at the airport shortly after he met the president and received the award.

That was my interview with Dennis Jones last night, shortly after he met the President and received the President's Volunteer Service Award.

The president's visit to Springfield will take a decidedly partisan turn today as he rallies supporters at 9:20 at the Springfield Expo Center.

While the President is inside the Expo Center, rallying supporters for next Tuesday's election, members of Peace Network of the Ozarks will be outside protesting....They'll be gathering on the north side of the Expo Center around 7:45 this morning.

Joan Collins is a member of the Peace Network of the Ozarks.

KSMU will have coverage of the president's remarks at the rally as well as coverage of protestors outside the rally this afternoon during All Things Considered.