The Grovetown Merchants Association is offering city residents an opportunity to meet and question candidates for the mayoral seat and three city council seats at a forum Monday .
The stump meeting will allow each of the five candidates 10 minutes to speak on their stances and field questions , said Sonny McDowell, the merchants association president and event organizer.
"We're going to do this every election cycle so that it becomes habit and people get used to it," he said.
The meeting will begin at 6:30 p.m. at Liberty Park Community Center on Newmantown Road.
The term "stump meeting" comes from 19th century political campaign styles in which candidates gave speeches in cities and towns in their district. Those speeches were often delivered from atop tree stumps in town squares, city parks and on farms.
"This whole thing is modeled after the Galivants Ferry Stump Meeting in Horry County that the Holiday family started on the river there," McDowell said.
The merchants association organized its first stump meeting in May for the state senate and congressional candidates to speak.
Former City Councilman George James is the sole candidate to replace Dennis Trudeau as mayor. James said the meeting will give residents a chance to meet and learn more about him.
Rosa Lee Owens, who is the only qualifier to fill James' unexpired city council term, also will be at the meeting. McDowell said he also invited three men vying for two city council seats in the Nov. 6 municipal election - Robert Len Newman and incumbents David Daughtry and Dick Manion.
McDowell said the candidates will be allowed to set up tables to distribute their campaign materials and to speak with residents before and after the meeting.
For more information, call McDowell at (706) 860-9699.
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