The polls at eight of the 10 Columbia village centers will be open on Saturday and Sunday for what some are calling the most important Columbia Council election in years.

Four of the seven open seats on the Columbia Assocation board are being contested, the most since 2009, while only two village board races, in Town Center and Hickory Ridge, will be contested.

In the village of Long Reach, the polls will open again on Saturday, April 27, and the new deadline for absentee ballots has been moved to Friday, April 26, according to village elections board chairperson Karen Hitcho.

Hitcho said the changes were made after the mailing of absentee ballots, which were supposed to be received by residents last week, was delayed. Hitcho estimates most of the residents received their ballots by Monday


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Meanwhile, in the contested CA board elections, Oakland Mills incumbent Alex Hekimian faces Julia Jackson McCready; Wilde Lake incumbent Regina Clay is up against Nancy McCord; Long Reach representative Ed Coleman is being challenged by former CA board member Russ Swatek; and River Hill incumbent Michael Cornell faces Clayborne Chavers.

Newcomer Brian Dunn is running uncontested in Kings Contrivance after current CA board chairwoman Shari Zaret announced she would not seek reelection. Incumbents Tom Coale (Dorsey’s Search) and Gregg Schwind (Hickory Ridge) are running uncontested. 

Here is more voting information for the upcoming elections:

Dorsey’s Search: Due to the change in village bylaws, the candidates are deemed elected and there will be no election. Village board: Ellen Mackey and Dan Woodruff. Columbia Council: Tom Coale.

Harper’s Choice: Village board (Three candidates for four seats): Stephen Cook, Ann De Lacy and Clarence Lam. No Columbia Council Election: Polls open on April 20, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Kahler Hall.

Hickory Ridge: Village board (Six candidates for five seats): Jerry Lioi, Miles Coffman, Linda Hitzelberger, Dane Kusic, Tom Louden and Michelle Wood. Columbia Council (One candidate) Gregg Schwind. Early voting April 19, 4 to 6:30 p.m at the Hickory Ridge Village Center. Polls open April 20, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Hickory Ridge Village Center.

Kings Contrivance: Village board (Three candidates for three seats): Art Perraud, Shari Zaret and Barbara Seely. Columbia Council (One candidate) Brian Dunn. Early voting April 19, 5 to 7 p.m. at Amherst House. April 20, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Amherst House.

Long Reach: Village board (Two candidates for two seats): Nina Basu and William Taylor. Columbia Council (Two candidates for one seat): Edward Coleman and Russell Swatek. Polls open April 20 and April 27, 9:30 a.m. to noon, at the Long Reach Village Center courtyard.

Oakland Mills: Village board (Six candidates for seven seats): Reginald Avery, Margaret Mauro, Phil Engelke, Jervis Dorton, Bill Gray and Liz Smull. Columbia Council (Two candidates for one seat): Julia McCready and Alex Hekimian. Polls open April 20, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., at the Other Barn.

Owen Brown: There will be no election since all races are uncontested. Village board: Kecia Rome, Jason Milner and Wayne Eldridge. No Columbia Council election.

River Hill: Village board (Two candidates for three seats): Kathy Chavers and Kenny Kan. Columbia Council (Two candidates for one seat): Clayborne Chavers and Michael Cornell. Polls open April 20, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., at Claret Hall.

Town Center: Village board (Four candidates for three seats): Joel Broida, Lynn Foehrkolb, Lee Richardson and Hugh Tousey. No Columbia Council election. Polls open April 20, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., at Vantage Point Road Park Gazebo.

Wilde Lake: Village board (Four candidates for five seats): Norma Rose, Joyce Ardo, Linda Odum and Rhoda Toback. Columbia Council (Two candidates for one seat): Nancy McCord and Regina Clay. Polls open April 20, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., at Slayton House.