MASON – Mason residents cast their ballots alongside their children on Election Day at Mason City Hall. Polling booths and tiny chairs sit by the customer service desk.
“We do this to encourage kids to become adult voters,” said City Manager Deborah Stuart.
The one-page sheet includes superheroes, colors and animals this year. All choices were made by Girl Scout Troop 30590 as part of their Democracy and Voting badges.
Some parents brought their children to vote before school started, but many usually come at the end of the school day. “A lot of parents will see it and bring their kids back later, so they make sure they get to vote, too,” Stuart said.
Dave and Lauren North had their son, Arlo, with them to participate in voting. “We took him to vote last year. It’s just because we don’t have a babysitter. But, we weren’t expecting all this. It’s very cool.”
“It’s something extra for him to do.” Dave North said, watching Arlo pick from various rewards. He grabbed candy before Stuart helped him put his ballot into the ballot bucket.
“It’s gonna be a close race for sure. I’m going Captain America, green star, and snake,” said clerk Paul Roach. “I like the snake!”
The results will be up on the City of Mason Government Facebook page by Wednesday, the final tallies being counted just for fun. “It’s definitely a nice way to get kids involved,” said Roach.
Adalin Haits, a second grader who was voting with her mom, wouldn’t reveal who she chose. Her mother, Karie Morgan, brought Adalin because she didn’t have school today. “The kids vote is why I decided not to put in my absentee ballot, so I could take her along with me. I wanted her to be able to experience this.”
Adalin said, “they didn’t have purple, that’s my favorite color.” She wished she could have picked more than one animal, but put her ballot in the bucket anyway. Mason hopes to continue the Kids General Election.