Kathy Tate, our super volunteer and a member of the KCDP executive committee, spent countless hours during summer 2019 staffing the party’s tables at local festivals. Kathy and our many other volunteers, who are too numerous to name, staffed these tables to meet voters, talk about issues, and show friendly Democratic faces to the community. This is Kathy’s report of the Democratic summer in Knox County.
Knox County Democrats made themselves known this summer. Volunteers staffed First Friday tables, the Knox County Fair booth, and a booth at the Dan Emmett Festival. For the most part, we were treated with respect and surprise that there was a Democratic presence. However, there were some people, following the lead of Donald Trump, who made nasty comments. We put on our invisible Teflon suits and let the negativity slide off of us.
To lighten the atmosphere at the fair, we had a “vote for your favorite fair food” poll. People wrote their favorite food on the back of a ticket and results were be tallied each day with a grand total at the end of the week. There were a total of 279 votes for 44 different items. The final results for the top 10 were:
2 Funnel cake
5 Ice Cream
6 Dippin Dots
7 Elephant Ears
8 Four way tie – Cotton Candy, Indian Bread, Pizza, Pulled Pork Nachos
We had a couple of interesting interactions with some teenagers. One young man came up to the table, pointed at his hat and asked “What do you think of this?” I looked at him and said, “It was made in China.”,He had an interesting stunned look. Another young man observed our “Resist” bumper stickers and asked why we had a bumper sticker that said, “racist.” After I explained that racist was spelled differently, and his friends started laughing, he walked away.
Our sign-up sheets over the summer to find volunteers and people who wanted to be kept informed of democratic events yielded more than 50 names. Hopefully, this will result in volunteers for next year’s presidential, congressional, and state legislative elections in addition to the local elections. We are looking for candidates who will run for office. Petitions to be on the primary ballot need to be filed with the Board of Elections by December 19.
We were able to register some new voters and change of address registrations at all of the events. Some people took the forms with them. We suggested that everyone check their registration status no matter when they last voted. We were able to use phones and tablets to confirm some of their registrations at the tables.
All in all, we had a productive summer. Thank you to all of the volunteers who manned the tables and booth.