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Originally published: 2013-07-08 11:11:43
Last modified: 2013-07-08 11:12:27

Our View: Elections, play: Make your voice heard

Thumbs-down: to a more-than-usual soggy July 4. Still, although the weather didn't fully cooperate with everyone's plans, it wasn't enough to dampen the spirit of our nation's 237th tribute to our independence. Such a celebration can't be contained to a single day, anyway. Let the festivities continue through today.

Thumbs-up: to candidate filing, which began Friday. A new election cycle means an opportunity for new choices and new directions. We wish our best to all those individuals civic-minded enough to run for office in any capacity -- you have no easy task ahead. And, a reminder to voters, the beginning of early voting is only 13 weeks away.

Thumbs-up: to our new Appalachian Regional Library directory of libraries, Jane Blackburn. Blackburn is the former director of Braswell Memorial Library in Rocky Mount, a fine library that makes a difference in its community. We look forward to her direction in working with our own stellar library system.

Thumbs-up: to the opportunity to interact with our state's poet laureate. Joseph Bathanti, a creative writing professor at Appalachian State University, will deliver the Belk Distinguished Lecture at 3:30 p.m. Thursday in Room 114 Belk Library and Information Commons. An even bigger thumbs-up: The event is free and open to the public.

Thumbs-up: for the opportunity to make your "YMCA" voice heard. After two analyses, there is yet no significant direction about the implementation of a YMCA in Watauga County. To voice your opinion, yea or nay, visit