We headed out to vote in our local Jacksonville Elections on May 11, and this Early Vote experience was a bit different. There was a food truck in the parking lot at the South Mandarin Library, and there was also the car that became an icon courtesy of the original Ghostbusters film. The car, ECTO-1, could have been the original or a replica—I’m not sure about that. It looked authentic. There were also different costumed characters wandering around. We saw one lady with this huge curved horn-looking thing. I’m not sure what it was.
My husband and I were, for a moment, perplexed. What was this all about?
The public libraries here host a Comic Con each year, and this year’s event coincided with the next to last day of early voting. Our district had two runoffs that needed to be decided for City Council.
When we stepped from the car, my husband said, “Looks like a lot of people are voting.”
I told him, “No way.”
Then we figured out the attendance was for the Comic Con event. When we went into the room to vote, not a single other soul was voting in an election that is closest to home when it comes to policy and regulations. Go figure.
I snapped a photo of the ECTO-1 for my granddaughter. She got a kick out of seeing the photo.
It looks like our city had a voter turnout in the range of 14-15 percent for this election. This makes no sense to me because here, we practically beg you to vote. We have a long Early Vote opportunity and libraries make it convenient for every voter.
I’m betting quite a few of the 85 percent or so who didn’t vote will be happy to complain about Council decisions.
When you consider not every state, including New York, will offer an Early Vote opportunity, you’d think people would appreciate it enough to show up and cast a choice.
At any rate, the sight of the ECTO-1 and the truly savory smells from that food truck combined with costumed comic characters made for a memorable Early Vote experience.
(Kay B. Day/May 17, 2019)