Election 2006 Student Action Team - Day 4
Day Four started with the last GOP sponsored breakfast that included a breakfast burrito, scrambled eggs, sausage, bacon, breakfast rolls, cereal, orange juice, tea, coffee, and fresh fruit. After eating quickly, we started to sense we were in the home stretch. After brief encouragement from adult sponsors Mark Stevenson, Tracey Sabella, Tanya Muckelrath, and Donna Shallenberger, Raymond Duriga once again encouraged us with a devotional about prayer. Raymond gave a Webster's definition on prayer, mentioned that the Scriptures talk about prayer over 300 times, then gave reference to Ephesians 6:18, James 3:16, Romans 6:26 and something in Phillipians that I did not get copied down. He said that prayer comes out of doing all that we can and trusting God for the results. Little did we know, we would need to trust God a lot that evening. Mark gave the end prayer and we were on our way to Stark County Republican Headquarters for the last time.
When we arrived, we did not find as many volunteers as in previous days. All of our team went right to work on the phones. Mark had to go to his church to fulfill some pastoral duties but left adult sponsor Donna Shallenberger in charge to make sure our team was busy. Some of our team decided to gather at Mark's church building to follow up on Raymond's request to pray. About 7 commuted to the church and prayed for the day and results of the election.
After the prayer team came back to Republican Headquarters, we were having issues with keeping our students on phones because the HQ'ers wanted to put other walk-in volunteers in their seats. HQ'ers used the lunch meal as a reason to displace students (note: our SAT made it clear to Republican Headquarters, from the beginning, that we were scheduling our own activities and we would schedule shifts for eating) This became an issue and Mark Stevenson warned that if HQ'ers would not use the assistance we were scheduled to give, we would send our team home. Mark quickly gathered adult sponsors outside for a conference to decide what to do. While sponsors were meeting outside, HQ'ers decided to defer to students again. Mark also reminded adult sponsors that this was Day 4, and everyone was wearing thin a little. So, we took those students that desired to take a break from the phones, and do sign waving. We were all starting to get worn out.
As we approached the intersection of Whipple and Everhard, we could all feel our excitement come back. The students gave it everything by trying to convince drivers that they should vote for Ken Blackwell. Then it happened. Out of now where appeared the Blackwell bus. It went right by us, honked its horn and disappeared onto an entrance ramp on I-77N! Our kids were so flattered. They thought that was just it! Mark called someone from the Blackwell team and discovered that Ken was not on the bus. But our kids and parents were still happy it went by.
When we went back to headquarters, we decided to take bags of literature and do drop-offs on driveways. Two teams went out and the students just ate it up. Give them something to throw, and they're happy.
When we got back to headquarters, it was around 5:00PM and everyone was getting tired. Half of our team decided to go home and refresh before our big bash at the Gotch home. The balance of the team stayed, all the way up until 6:00PM and then we said our goodbyes to all the staff. Our team still made phone calls, unofficially, in the neighborhood of 3,100 calls.
There were many incalculable things we did to further the work at Republican Headquarters. We collated all of the walking lists and put them in order, collated all the literature drop bags and put them in container bags, assisted the Washington D.C. staff member in rounding up our Gen J calling sheets, added to the atmosphere of positive accomplishments, provided the appearance of an overwhelming volunteer force for the local party's photo opportunities, and gave a great impression to those who have not met home schooled students and their families.
Our team had a total of 20 people participate this day, with 14 students and 6 adult sponsors.