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Election Day 2016: Voter turnout of UWRF students, River Falls community

November 8, 2016

On perhaps the most important Election Day of the 21st century, residents of River Falls and UW-River Falls students are heading to the polls to make their voices heard.

The City of River Falls is made up of four districts, which determine where residents of River Falls will vote. The UWRF campus is split between two districts, meaning that while half of those living on campus can vote at the University Center, the other half will have to cast their ballots at the River Falls High School.

The Student Voice will be giving updates on these two polling locations throughout the day. The updates will be focused on voter turnout, how busy the polling locations are and if voters are experiencing difficulties while voting.

8 p.m.: Polls closed at 8 p.m., with 1,430 students and community members total showing up to the University Center to vote, while 1,241 voted at the River Falls High School.

4 p.m.: As people were getting off work and classes were ending, both of the polling locations became packed with people ready to vote. Election officials at both locations said that around 4 p.m. was the busiest time of the day. However, both locations are still working efficiently. The University Center has now seen a total of 1,037 voters, while the River Falls High School is now up to 908.

Noon: As of noon, the University Center polling location has seen a total of 540 voters, 416 more voters than at 8 a.m. An election official said that there has been a steady stream of students as well as community members, with a long line forming around noon. However the line went quickly because many people walked in already registered and with the right materials. She attributes this to the efforts by the university and students organizations to educate students on how to vote.

The River Falls High School has seen 356 voters since 8 a.m., totaling 547. An election official said that things are running smoothly, with a steady stream of both community members and students turning up to vote.

8 a.m.: In the University Center, 124 residents have already cast their votes since the polls opened at 7 a.m. According to one of the volunteers working at the polling place, not many students have voted at the University Center so far.

At the River Falls High School polling location, 191 residents have cast their ballots. So far, a good amount of students have visited the polling place to vote. Both polling places at this time have very short lines and have not experienced any problems thus far.