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ASUA to hold free concert for voters

KEVIN B. KLAUS/Arizona Daily Wildcat
Geography senior Steven Eddy hands Tyler Kearney, a dance and business junior, her ticket yesterday afternoon at the ASUA office to see the Nappy Roots concert.
By Natasha Bhuyan
Arizona Daily Wildcat
Friday, September 24, 2004
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Next week, Associated Students of the University of Arizona's push to register students to vote will culminate with a Nappy Roots concert exclusively for registered voters.

Students who are not registered will be able to do so at the ASUA office when they pick up tickets, or at the door of the Oct. 1 concert on Bear Down Field.

With the voter registration deadline for the presidential election Oct. 4, ASUA Sen. Steven Eddy said the Rock the Vote 2004 concert, headlined by Nappy Roots, the number one selling hip-hop group for 2002, with local ska/punk band Troy's Bucket, will be ASUA's last big effort for voter registration on campus.

To pick up a concert ticket, students must show their CatCard and proof of voter registration.

Ryan Patterson, Arizona Students' Association director, said items like a voter registration card or a carbon copy of the registration form will be accepted as proof.

Registration forms will be available for students who are not yet registered to vote, Eddy said, so they can register and pick up their ticket on the spot.

Students who are ineligible to vote due to factors like age or international status can still pick up a ticket with their CatCard, said Andrew Record, special events director for ASUA.

Alistair Chapman, student body president, said voter registration is only the first part of a three-phase plan to increase civic engagement among UA students.

Phase two of ASUA's civic engagement plan is to have informational speakers on campus to engage and educate students in politics.

Upcoming speakers include documentary filmmaker Michael Moore, U.S. Rep. Jim Kolbe (R) and David Hardy, co-author of "Michael Moore is a Big Fat Stupid White Man."

The last phase is getting students to polling stations.

As part of its voter registration campaign, ASUA teamed up with Residence Life to distribute more than 6,000 voter registration packets at the beginning of the semester.

To date, ASUA has registered approximately 600 students, but Chapman said their goal is much higher.

During the 2000 presidential election, ASUA registered 2,400 students, a figure Chapman hopes to surpass.

"There's a lot more potential because there's a lot of unregistered voters out there," Chapman said.

Chapman said ASUA aims to register 2,500 to 3,000 students, and hopes the incentive of the free concert will help them reach that goal.

Sara Birnbaum, executive vice president of ASUA, said civic involvement is important on campus because although the 18-to 24-year-old demographic has the lowest voter turnout, students have the ability to become a dominant political force.

"Students can make a dramatic shift regarding national politics as well as influence state and local issues," Eddy said.

Bryon Carpenter, trumpet player for Troy's Bucket, said the band agreed to perform at Rock the Vote 2004 because it is a good way to get students to register to vote.

"It will be a great show," Carpenter said. "The more people that come out, the more fun it will be."

Carpenter said he is looking forward to performing with Nappy Roots, as they are a group from a different genre of music.

Five thousand tickets are available for the show, and Eddy anticipates a full house.

The concert begins at 7 p.m. Gates will be open at 6 p.m.

Tickets can be picked up through Oct. 1 in the ASUA office, located on the third floor of the Student Union Memorial Center, from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

All tickets are general admission, and limited to one ticket per student. Any remaining tickets will be given out at the door, with a CatCard and proof of registration.

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