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Voters Crowd Neighborhood Polling Stations for Tight Election

By Benjamin Woodard | November 7, 2012 2:13am | Updated on November 7, 2012 2:14am

ROGERS PARK — Polling places around the neighborhood opened their doors Tuesday morning to voters who will help decide the country's next president.

Mosezell Williams, 47, turned out to vote for Barack Obama at Leona's on Sheridan Road. He said he had lived in Rogers Park for most his life.

"It feels good to vote," he said. "[Obama] needs four more years, then I think everything will be OK."

Other voters filed into the southwest corner of Leona's dining room to complete their ballots. Some stood at the designated voting booths, while others slipped into the dining booths to mark their vote.

"I've never worked in a restaurant before," joked election judge Grace Eger, who said she had worked as a judge in the last election.

Eger said neighbors were lined up out the door at 6 a.m., before most people went to work.

Andrew Mannix, 22, a graduate student at Northwestern University said his voting experience had gone smoothly.

"It was very easy to do my civic duty," he said.

Other voters didn't find it as easy. Several people were turned away from voting locations in Edgewater and Rogers Park for turning up at the wrong polling place.

Alderman Joe Moore (48th) took to social media to warn constituents that their voting locations might have changed after recent ward redistricting. In addition, communication was hampered after the city's election website experienced outages throughout the day.

Several bars and restaurants around the neighborhood held election night events, including the Heartland Cafe and the Mayne Stage/Act One Pub.

Humphrey Jackie, who voted with her son at Eugene Field School in Rogers Park, said she had voted in every election since she turned 18 in 1959.

"I love to vote," she said.