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Ring door bells. Kiss babies. Sponsor a chalk art competition

Post by News Tribune Staff on June 13, 2008 at 11:06 am |
June 13, 2008 11:06 am

OK, maybe a state Treasurer candidate doesn’t ring door bells (that’s better left to city and county candidates). And the whole baby-kissing thing probably is best reserved for presidential politics.

But state Rep. Jim McIntire, the Seattle Democrat running for state Treasurer, really is putting up the dough to sponsor this week’s Frost Park Chalk Off.

The Chalk Off, in case you didn’t know, is a weekly happening at downtown Tacoma’s Frost Memorial Park, the little park at the corner of South Ninth and Pacific Avenue.

Artists use chalk to create temporary sidewalk art. Prizes are awarded. Photos and video end up on the Internet — and in The News Tribune.

So what exactly is McIntire paying to sponsor the event?

First prize is a $75 El Gaucho gift certificate. Second prize is an interview in The Tacoma Sun, an award that would not appear to cost the candidate anything.

Maybe the better question is, why is a state Treasurer candidate paying for an El Gaucho gift certificate for the winner of a chalk art competition?


It’s hard to get much for a “down-ballot” race like Treasurer, he said.

And apparently the Chalk Off is becoming the place for politicians to see and be seen — Pierce County Councilman Tim Farrell and Metro Parks Tacoma Commissioner Ryan Mello have reportedly made appearances.

McIntire said he met a guy in Tacoma (Erik Bjornson) who told him about the event. He liked the sound of it, and decided that sponsoring it would be a creative way to generate publicity.

Plus, “It sounded like a cool event,” McIntire said.

It starts at noon.

McIntire is running against Republican Allan Martin, a top deputy for outgoing Democratic incumbent Mike Murphy, and ChangMook Sohn, the state’s chief economist for more than two decades.

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