Community Center gets homey as polling place

       As the first-time polling place for Precincts 112 and 113, the Westside Commun-ity Center made it a “treat” for voters in the Nov. 6 General Election.
       “We gave coffee and cookies to everybody,” said center director Dick Siever. “A lot of people hadn't been here since it became a center, and they were saying they can't believe how nice it looks.”

Just before 7 a.m. Nov. 6, voters from Precincts 112 and 113 wait outside the Westside Community Center for the polls to open for the General Election. It was the first time the building at 17th and Bijou had been used for a polling place since 2006 when it was still Buena Vista Elementary.
Westside Pioneer photo

       Election officials reported that a total of 808 ballots were cast there Nov. 6. The two precincts have about 1,800 registered voters between them, but with early voting possibilities, it could only be speculated how many would actually come in on election day.
       As it was, a line of about 50 people formed outside the center's entrance before the polls opened at 7 a.m. A man in the front of the line said he had gotten there at 6 a.m. because he wanted to be able to vote without delay before going to work.
       The voting took place in the center's gymnasium, which is now named Hughes Hall.
       The center also offered a benefit to the election judges by providing a “hospitality room” elsewhere in the building for their breaks. “The judges loved it,” Siever said. “There are very few polling places that have a place judges can go to eat lunch.”
       Siever had asked the county to make the center a polling place, in part to make it known to more people. The site had last been used for that purpose in 2006 when it was still Buena Vista Elementary. The Westside Community Center has been there since 2009, operating since 2010 under a community-action arm of the Woodmen Valley Chapel.

Westside Pioneer article