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Do Something: The Election Edition

First, vote. Then hit up an Election Returns Watch Party at City Diner, embark on an Election Day art crawl and more ways to celebrate your right to vote in Philadelphia

Every Monday we round up a handful of fun ways to get involved throughout the week to make your city better. Have ideas for upcoming events? Email tips here.

Inspire Youth to Vote With Theater

Local playwright David Bradley and Philly-based hip-hop group Ill Doots teamed up during the DNC to write and perform the play Voices of Voting. Commissioned by Committee of Seventy, the play utilizes music, audience participation and stories about young men and women who had to fight for their right to vote in the 1960s to inspire civic engagement—and voter turnout—among local youth. During the DNC, the play reached 1,000 youth in 3 days, so organizers are bringing it back the night before Election Day in the hopes of making one last push to local youth to get out and vote. There will be four performances throughout the day. The show is only 35 minutes long, and concludes with a talkback session that encourages audience members to “reflect on their own citizenship by considering the courage of the previous generation.” Admission is free, but reservations are required. You can do that by emailing voicesofvoting@seventy.org. Monday, November 7, 11 a.m., 12:15 p.m, 1:30 p.m. and 7 p.m., free, Enterprise Center, 4548 Market Street. 

Vote! Then Use Hashtag #CitizenVotes

Obvious, yes, but we’d be remiss if this one wasn’t included in the list. November 8 is Election Day and it is so important that you head to your polling station and exercise your right to vote. We understand you may be exhausted by the Presidential election, maybe even put off enough that you don’t want to bother voting. Come on! We didn’t come all this way for nothing. Plus, there’s so much more on the ballot besides Donald and Hillary. There’s United States Senator, State Attorney General, State Treasurer, two important ballot questions and lots more. Study up on all that before you head into the ballot box with our nifty, one-stop voting guide to the Philadelphia ballot, which you can find here. Once you’ve voted, snap a photo and share it on Twitter and Instagram with the hashtag #CitizenVotes. We’ll be sharing voter photos on our social media accounts throughout the day. Let’s do this, Philadelphia! Tuesday, November 8, 7 a.m.-8 p.m., free, your polling station with you can find here

Go On a Polling Station Art Crawl

Next Stop: Democracy (NSD), the local organization that planted hundreds of artist-made voter signs at polling places around Philadelphia, returns in a big way for its third election cycle. This time around, they’ll have voter signs at each and every polling place in Philadelphia—from well-trafficked stations in Center City to those quirky little rowhome voting spots in South Philly.  NSD posits that making our polling places more attractive with this bright, creative signage revs up voter engagement and increases turnout. After you vote Tuesday, embark on a Voting Day Art Crawl around town to check out the local-made works of art. Sixty of the A-frame “Vote Here/Aqui” signs that were used in the previous two elections will be joined by a trio of posters created by Philly aritsts Amberella, Nate Harris and Monica O. Tuesday, November 8, 7 a.m.-8 p.m., free, wherever there’s a ballot box.

Watch the Returns at City Diner

No matter which side you’re on, the outcome of the 2016 Presidential election will be historic. You might as well have some fries with that. On November 8 we’re teaming up with Philadelphia 3.0, Committee of Seventy and Influencing Action Movement for an Election Returns Watch Party at the brand new City Diner on Broad and South streets. Mingle with local engaged folks and munch on free bar snacks as you watch states across the country turn red or blue (or maybe green?) on the diner’s big screen TVs. Admission is only $5; they can be purchased here. Tuesday, November 8, 8-11 p.m., City Diner, Broad and South streets. 

Celebrate the End of Election 2016

This election cycle has been one dizzying, gut-punching, make-you-want-to-barf experience—kind of like you feel after a day of hard drinking. But now it’s over and we need to replenish our souls with a good dose of fun and dancing and art. That’s just what we’ll be doing Friday night during our Election Hangover Party co-hosted by activist dance party-throwers Get Lucid. The party’s going down on two floors of the swanky Ruba Club, with live music upstairs from 9 p.m. to midnight, and a dance party on the lower level from 10 p.m. to 3 a.m. If dancing’s not your jam, sip a cocktail while you browse pop-up art exhibitions by folks like Abstract Nteligent and Angie Vita, or hear spoken word poetry and comedy from Warren C. Longmire and Ronald Metellus. As special guests, we’re inviting a bevy of our favorite Philly grassroots organizations, like Coded by Kids, Covenant House, and Temple’s Cradle 2 Grave initiative. Long story short, there will be tons of fun stuff going on, but one thing is certain—there won’t be a Hillary or a Donald or an election ad in sight. That’s cause enough for a party, right? Join us! Friday, November 11, 8 p.m.-3 a.m., $10.50, Ruba Club, 416 Green Street. 

Header photo courtesy of Next Stop: Democracy (vote sign by Aubree Eisenwinter)

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