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Photos of Early Voting on Thursday Morning, Numerous Candidates Campaign Outside Polling Places in Watauga

By Jesse Wood

Oct. 23, 2014. Today is the first day of early voting across the state and numerous one-stop sites are open in the county.

All the sites opened at 8 a.m. this morning.

While the Watauga County Administration Building will stay open until 5 p.m. on Thursday, the ASU Student Union, Blowing Rock Town Hall, Deep Gap VFD, Meat Camp VFD and Western Watauga Community Center early voting sites will remain open until 4 p.m.

Early on Thursday, numerous candidates were out and about pitching their candidacy to folks wandering near the polls.

Karen Lerch, a Republican candidate for Watauga County Board of Commissioners, incumbent Democrat Commissioner Billy Kennedy, Sue Counts, who is running against State Rep. Jonathan Jordan, Ronny Holste, a candidate for Watauga County Board of Education and Larry Turnbow, a candidate for county commission, were all outside of either the Watauga County Administration Building or the Plemmons Student Union at around 9 a.m. on Thursday morning.

At about 9 a.m. this morning, local polling officials said that about 110 had voted so far at the Plemmons Student Union, 80 at the Watauga County Administration Building and about 10 at the Western Watauga Community Center.

At the Plemmons Student Union on Thursday morning, I was taking photos of some of the candidates and election signs around campus. A student walked by and asked if today was Election Day. I told him that early voting just started and Election Day was Nov. 4.

He then asked if Republicans were the ones that tried to stop early voting on campus. I said that was the case, and he mentioned he was going to vote against all the Republicans on the ballot because of that issue. However, when asked, he noted that he didn’t know who any of the candidates were.

An early-voting site on the campus of ASU was decided at nearly the last minute on Wednesday. This followed many legal proceedings, and after the State Board of Elections selected a site on campus because it thought it was legally required to do so on Wednesday afternoon, the N.C. Supreme Court stepped in and essentially ruled that it could disallow early voting on campus for at least this election cycle.

But with early voting only hours away on Wednesday, the State Board of Elections decided not to hold a second emergency meeting to rescind the early-voting site on campus. See more of that story here.

See sample ballots in Watauga here.

Early Voting Hours, Dates, Locations

Watauga County Administration Building

  • Thursday, Oct. 23, at 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Friday, Oct. 24, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Monday, Oct. 27 – 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
  • Tuesday, Oct. 28 – 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
  • Wednesday, Oct. 29 – 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
  • Thursday, Oct. 30 – 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
  • Friday, Oct. 31 – 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
  • Saturday, Nov. 1 – 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.

ASU Student Union 

  • Thursday, Oct. 23 – 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Friday, Oct. 24 – 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Monday, Oct. 27 – 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Tuesday, Oct. 28 – 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Wednesday, Oct. 29 – 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Thursday, Oct. 30 – 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Friday, Oct. 31 – 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Saturday, Nov. 1 – 8 to 10 a.m.

Times for All Other Voting Sites:

Blowing Rock Town Hall, Deep Gap VFD, Meat Camp VFD and Western Watauga Community Center

  • Thursday, Oct. 23 – 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Friday, Oct. 24 – 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Monday, Oct. 27 – 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Tuesday, Oct. 28 – 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Wednesday, Oct. 29 – 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

 

Three gentlemen walk up the steps to the Western Watauga Community Center to vote first thing on Thursday morning.
Three gentlemen walk up the steps to the Western Watauga Community Center to vote first thing on Thursday morning.
Several folks vote inside the Watauga County Administration Building on Thursday morning.
Several folks vote inside the Watauga County Administration Building on Thursday morning.
Incumbent Commissioner Billy Kennedy stands outside the Plemmons Student Union.
Incumbent Commissioner Billy Kennedy stands outside the Plemmons Student Union.
Folks line up to vote inside the Plemmons Student Union.
Folks line up to vote inside the Plemmons Student Union.
School board candidate Ronny Holste campaigns outside the courthouse.
School board candidate Ronny Holste campaigns outside the courthouse.
Incumbent Commissioner Billy Kennedy (D), Sue Counts, a Democrat running against State Rep. Jonathan Jordan and Karen Lerch, a Republican candidate for Watauga County Board of Commissioners, stand outside the Plemmons Student Union on Thursday morning.
Incumbent Commissioner Billy Kennedy (D), Sue Counts, a Democrat running against State Rep. Jonathan Jordan and Karen Lerch, a Republican candidate for Watauga County Board of Commissioners, stand outside the Plemmons Student Union on Thursday morning.
Larry Turnbow is a Democrat facing David Blust for a seat on the county commission.
Larry Turnbow is a Democrat facing David Blust for a seat on the county commission.
Students walk inside the Plemmons Student Union on Thursday morning.
Students walk inside the Plemmons Student Union on Thursday morning.
Folks voting inside the Plemmons Student Union polling place.
Folks voting inside the Plemmons Student Union polling place.
Signs on the edge of the highway near the Western Watauga Community Center.
Signs on the edge of the highway near the Western Watauga Community Center.
A couple votes in the Western Watauga Community Center on Thursday morning.
A couple votes in the Western Watauga Community Center on Thursday morning.