They got the ganas; now do they have the votes? Supporters of mayoral candidate Dana Boke braved the snowy streets of Spearfish today to throw their last pitch to voters headed for the polls:

Elizabeth campaigns for Boke at Jackson and Main

Elizabeth campaigns for Boke at Jackson and Main...


...and Elizabeth's roommate Karli works the opposite corner on a snowy Election Day

ElizaBeth and Karli are roommates at Black Hills State. Karli said Boke would bring leadership, a sense of community, and prosperity to Spearfish.


Brian puts up his dukes for Dana at Jackson and 10th in Spearfish

Brian said he's read the Madville Times often during this campaign. That didn't stop us from having a great talk at Jackson and 10th, in sight of snowbound Lookout Mountain. He said Dana is all about community (there's that word again), collaboration, and character. Brian runs the coffee shop across from the Bokes' business on Main Street. He said as a businessman, he appreciates Boke's background and believes she will open the door for more voices to be heard.

Brian noted that Mayor Jerry Krambeck has touted his 13 years of experience. Brian said the fact that Dana has never held public office before speaks in her favor, since she can bring a new set of eyes to problems like figuring out the half-million-dollar budget shortfall at the City Rec Center. I acknowledged that every public official starts out with no experience as a public official. I then asked Brian if his logic applies in the other direction: when we look for someone to run a business, do we automatically look for someone who has no experience running a business? I think we worked our way to an agreement that experience is relevant but not absolute in determining qualification for public office.


Jason Boke and Jordan Boke campaign for wife & mom Dana at North and Rushmore

Maybe I'm just projecting, but when I introduced myself and asked to take this picture, Dana's husband Jason and her daughter Jordan didn't seem thrilled with the opportunity for publicity. Remember those key words, neighbors: community and communication. And someone get Jason a fresh cup of coffee!


Voters risked their lives to do their democratic duty, walking under a looming avalanche of ice on the roof. As of 17:45 MDT, the ice still held, and no fatalities had been reported.

I stopped by the Senior Citizens Center to check on turnout. At 17:40 MDT, in Ward 2, where voters have mayor, city council, and school board to vote on, turnout was 21%. In combined Ward 1 and Ward 3, with mayor and school board on the ballot, turnout was 19%. The rural ward, with only school board on the ballot, only 3% of voters had turned out.

Polls close in just a couple minutes; then election officials must haul the ballots up potentially icy roads to the Lawrence County Courthouse in Deadwood to feed them into the ballot machine for the official count. Keep your fingers crossed!