Campaign volunteers and candidates were staked out in front of the Bloomsbury Community Center in Catonsville on Thursday afternoon, June 12, marking the first day of the week-long period of early voting that will precede the June 24 primary election.
With cloudy skies and intermittent rain, the first day of early voting wasn't a busy one at the center.
Cindy Loverde, of Catonsville, was one of the residents who turned out to cast an early ballot.
"I don't think the weather has helped today, but maybe after work it will start to pick up," said Loverde, who has volunteered to support three campaigns.
Surrounded by dozens handing out pamphlets for candidates, Loverde said she had already decided who she would vote for.
"I've pretty much made up my mind," Loverde said. "The campaign volunteers don't really make an impact, because I've already decided who I'm going to vote for."
Clayton Daneker, 20, was one of the campaign volunteers standing on the sidewalk next to Bloomsbury Avenue.
Daneker, a political science major at St. Mary's College of Maryland, said he woke up at 6:30 a.m. to set up by 8:30 a.m. He'll be out talking to voters until voting closes at 8 p.m.
"I'm not totally quite sure I believe we're making an impact with the early voting electioneering or not, because you kind of think the people who vote early have already made up their minds, but you never know," Daneker said.
Daneker said by 1:30 p.m. he hadn't seen many people walk into the center to cast their vote, but expects that may change as people get off work.
In 2013, legislation was passed by the General Assembly that expanded the number of early voting centers and the amount of days residents could cast an early vote. The number of centers were increased from five to eight in Baltimore County.
In 2010, 2,233 people voted early at the Bloomsbury center within the six day period, as compared with the 6,316 who voted during the regular primary election period of six days, according to Baltimore County Board of Elections data. A total of 13,032 voted early throughout the county that year.
In 2012, the number of early voters decreased slightly to 2,162 at the Bloomsbury center, while 11,272 turned out to vote in the primary, board of elections data showed. A total of 11,945 voters turned out for early voting in 2012.
Early voting is being held at eight centers in Baltimore County including: Towson University Administration Building, Bloomsbury Community Center in Catonsville, Honeygo Run Community Center in Perry Hall, North Point Library in Dundalk, Randallstown Community Center, Back River Community Center in Essex, Center for Maryland Agriculture in Cockeysville and Reisterstown Senior Center, according to Maryland Board of Elections information.
Centers will be open from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. until Thursday, June 19.