Meet regional candidates face to face |

Meet regional candidates face to face

Friday forum begins with mingling hour at Community Center

Melinda Dudley

— Voters will be able to meet face to face with many of the candidates in local and regional races at Election Forum ’08 on Friday night.

Friday night’s event is co-sponsored by the Steamboat Pilot & Today, Steamboat tv18, Steamboat Springs Board of Realtors, and the Routt County Republican and Democratic parties.

The night will begin with a candidate meet-and-greet at 5 p.m. at the Steamboat Springs Community Center, followed by the election forum at 6 p.m., moderated by Steamboat Pilot & Today Editor Brent Boyer.

After a brief election information presentation by Routt County Clerk and Recorder Kay Weinland, each candidate or candidate’s representative will have the opportunity to make an opening statement, as well as answer questions.

With all the attention being paid to the presidential race, Friday’s election forum provides a welcome opportunity to focus on the local races, Routt County Democratic Party Communications Director Lynn Abbott said.

“Many of us haven’t had the chance to hear some of our local candidates speak,” Abbott said. “I think the meet-and-greet will be especially valuable.”

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The forum also will provide an opportunity for decided voters to see their chosen candidates in action and speak about the issues, Routt County Republican Central Committee Chairman Vance Halvorson said.

“A lot of times, people come to forums because they support a candidate, and they want to hear them talk and see how they present themselves,” he said.

Representatives for U.S. Senate candidates Bob Schaffer and Mark Udall will be in attendance Friday night, as well as a representative for incumbent U.S. Rep. John Salazar.

Salazar’s Republican challenger, Delta County Commissioner Wayne Wolf, is one of the many candidates who will be on hand at Friday’s forum. He will be joined by state Senate District 8 candidates Al White and Ken Brenner; state House District 57 candidates Todd Hagenbuch and Randy Baumgardner; State Board of Education candidates Jill Brake and Marcia Neal; and 14th Judicial District Attorney candidates Elizabeth Oldham and Tammy Stewart.

Advocates for Steamboat Springs’ half-cent sales tax for education also will speak about Referendums 2A and 2B, city ballot measures asking voters whether to renew the tax and whether its revenues should be shared with other Routt County schools.

The event will be televised by Steamboat tv18 and broadcast three days a week until Election Day. Beginning Monday, the election forum will air Monday, Wednesday and Sunday at 7 p.m., and Sunday at 2 p.m.

The final airing will be at 7 p.m. Nov. 3, the night before Election Day.

If you go

What: Election Forum ’08, sponsored by the Steamboat Pilot & Today, Steamboat tv18, Steamboat Springs Board of Realtors, and the Routt County Republican and Democratic parties

When: A candidate meet-and-greet is from 5 to 6 p.m. Friday, with food and refreshments from Azteca Taqueria. The forum will begin at 6 p.m.

Where: Steamboat Springs Community Center