2004 Geography Bee
Peshawar, a city in the North-West Frontier Province of Pakistan, has had strategic importance for centuries because of its location near what historic pass? This was the final question in the 2004 National Geographic Geography Bee in Washington, D.C., on May 26, 2004. The winner was 14-year-old Andrew Wojtanik of Overland Park, Kansas, who knew that the answer was the Khyber Pass.
This was Andrew's second year in the national bee, open only to those who had won their states' geography bees. He didn't make it to the final round last year, but "experience definitely counts," he said. "You know what the pressure is like and how the questions are going to be worded and how hard they're going to be, and it's definitely an advantage."
To get ready for the competition, Andrew studied for about eight hours every weekend and three hours on weekdays. In fact, he wrote and typed his own almanac, containing 432 pages of information. He explained that "it's got everything you need to know about all the countries -- its currency, its ethnic groups, its mountains, rivers, all that stuff."
The national bee's 55 semifinalists included one contestant from each of the 50 states, plus the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Pacific Territories, and Department of Defense Schools. The final round, which had ten finalists, was moderated by Alex Trebek, host of Jeopardy! and was broadcast on the National Geographic Channel. It will be broadcast again on public television in June. For winning, Andrew will recieve a $25,000 scholarship, a lifetime National Geographic membership, and a trip to a Busch Gardens/Sea World Adventure Camp.
Here are a few more questions from this year's national bee. See if you can get any of the answers.
- Tourists often toss coins into the Trevi Fountain at the heart of what city?
- Alkmaar, a town famous for its cheese market, is on a canal with access to the Waddenzee. Alkmaar is in which country?
- Dagestan, a region that includes many different ethnic groups, is located just west of what large body of water?
- In March 2004 seven eastern European countries joined NATO, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. Of these new NATO members, name the one that borders the Russian oblast of Kaliningrad.
- Khark island is an important oil export terminal in the Persian Gulf. This island belongs to what country?
(Answers: Rome, Netherlands, the Caspian Sea, Lithuania, Iran).
See also our quiz with questions from the 2000 Geography Bee www.factmonster.com/spot/quiz/geobee3/1.html .