Natick Democrats Foster Voting at Children's Polling Station
The results for "favorite sports team" and "favorite character" were decided by only a few votes in a heated election at Natick Days.
Courtesy Natick Democratic Town Committee
With beautiful blue skies leading to a high voter turnout at the Children’s Voting Booth, the races on this year’s ballot were hotly contested, but several clear winners emerged at the end of the day. In the premier race on the ballot, Harry Potter was voted in as the “Favorite Character” for children in Natick, edging out his closest rival, SpongeBob Squarepants by just nine votes. Also, despite their recent struggles, the Boston Red Sox remain the favorite team for Natick’s youth, beating the Patriots by nine votes, as well.
The Children’s Voting Booth is an annual Natick Days tradition for the Natick Democratic Town Committee. Built to resemble a real booth, the Children’s Booth offers kids of all ages a chance to get the experience of voting in a meaningful election, an experience made complete by a ballot that is designed to resemble the real thing. Constructed by longtime volunteer Jay Ball, the booth and the ballot have been a huge success the past few years, and the feedback from parents has been great.
“I think the parents enjoy seeing their children filling out their first ever ballot,” says Town Committee Chair Dylan Hayre. “Often times the parents will speak with the volunteers at our table about some of the campaigns going on across the region, while their child has to decide what their favorite food is.” The favorite food category this year was also a close race, with ice cream coming out on top, just twelve votes ahead of cookies.
Once the ballot is complete, the young voter places it in the ballot box and receives an “I Voted” sticker. The ballots are then tallied up and results are announced, but the real impact lasts much longer than the actual process. “Parents have had the chance to engage in a meaningful conversation with local volunteers,” says Hayre, “and children have started to fall in love with one of the most important things anyone can do: voting.”
The real election this year will take place on November 6, where Natick voters – who are eighteen or older – will head to the polls and vote on a number of races, most notably the contests for President of the United States and United States Senate. Leading up to the elections, the Natick Democratic Town Committee will be organizing a number of events and having their regular monthly meetings, as well.
The Natick Democratic Town Committee is a nonprofit community organization that actively promotes Democratic candidates and causes. The NDTC supports full participation in the political process for all citizens and advocates values such as: employment and economic opportunity; a healthy environment; quality, affordable health care; civil rights; affordable housing; access to good public education; and fair taxation. Meetings are held the fourth Wednesday of each month. For information, visit www.Natickdems.org.