Winter is the perfect time to explore the natural stone shelters where native Arkansans once lived
The big interest in the general election ballot in Pulaski County this year is the race for president.
Voters will have seven choices, including Democrat Barack Obama and Republican John McCain.
The only other race being contested statewide pits incumbent U.S. Sen. David Pryor against Green Party candidate Rebekah Kennedy. A Green Party candidate, Deb McFarland, will challenge U.S. Rep. Vic Snyder's re-election to Congress from the Second District.
Among local races, the top contest is probably Republican Phil Wyrick's challenge of long-time incumbent County Judge Buddy Villines.
Among other contested races:
• State Rep. Fred Allen of Little Rock, a Democrat, has a Green Party challenger, Conrad Harvin, in District 33.
• Republican Herbert Broadway challenges state Rep. Wilhelmina Lewellen of Little Rock, a Democrat, in District 34.
• Democrat John Edwards and Republican Kelly Eichler are contesting the open District 38 seat for House of Representatives in Little Rock.
• Green Party member Richard Carroll has two write-in opponents, Clinton R. Hampton and L. Green for District 39 in North Little Rock.
• Democrat Val Yagos, Green Party candidate Gene Mason and Republican Jane English are in a three-way race for House District 42 in northern Pulaski County.
• Democrat Jim Nickels of North Little Rock and Republican Steve Meckfessel of Gravel Ridge are seeking the House District 43 seat.
• Democratic Sheriff Doc Holladay has a Republican challenger, Patrick Mulligan.
• There are four runoffs for judicial races: Cathi Compton and Melinda Gilbert for circuit judge; Gary Sullivan and Mark Leverett for Little Rock environmental court judge; Hugh Finkelstein and Alice Lightle for the criminal division of Little Rock district court; Rita Bailey and Chris Walton for Wrightsivlle district judge.
• Three justice of the peace races are contested: Democrat Kathy Lewison against Republican Sid Rosenbaum in District 3; incumbent Democrat Donna Massey against Green Party candidate Wainette Copas in District 6, and, in District 8, Democrat Curtis Keith against independent Paula Withers.
• Among a number of municipal races on the ballot across the county, Little Rock City Director Gene Fortson will seek election to his appointed position and faces two opponents, Glen Schwarz and Ross Phillips.
• In North Little Rock, in addition to three aldermanic contests, Mayor Pat Hays has multiple challengers for re-election – Bubba Lloyd, Bill Laman and Michelle McLelland.
Voters also will have five statewide ballot issues to consider:
• Referred Question No. 1 – Asks voters to authorize up to $300 million in bonds for water projects.
• Proposed Constitutional Amendment 1 – Clarifies constitution by removal of archaic language and changes election commission procedures.
• Proposed Constitutional Amendment 2 – Requires annual, rather than biannual, sessions of the legislature, with the meeting in even-numbered years for budget purposes.
• Proposed Constitutional Amendment 3 – Authorizes a state lottery, with proceeds devoted to college scholarships.
• Proposed Initiated Act 1 – To prohibit a person who is cohabiting outside marriage from being an adoptive or foster parent.
The county election commission website at votepulaski.net has full details.