Enjoy the Tacoma waterfront this summer!

Photo of the captain of Freda BDid the Festival of Sail inspire you to set sail or explore the restaurants, businesses and recreational opportunities along Tacoma’s waterfront? Here are some water-related activities and events so you can get more involved:

  • Go on a cruise with Destiny Harbor Tours. They offer two-hour boat tours from the waterside at the Museum of Glass as well as tours from Gig Harbor and charters.
  • Learn about the Port of Tacoma on their free boat tours. July 16.
  • Volunteer to clean up beaches and restore habitat with Citizens for a Healthy Bay.
  • Rent and ride a surrey along Ruston Way through Wheel Fun Rentals at Point Ruston.
  • Run with South Sound Running and Tacoma Runners. Many runs go along the waterfront or in Pt. Defiance Park.
  • Join the Tacoma Waterfront Association. Support clean water, recreational opportunities and businesses along Tacoma’s waterfront. Great monthly meetings, network opportunities and events!

Community Events

Photo of the 4th of July air showHere are some fun community events located along Tacoma’s waterfront:

Downtown to Defiance Trolley

Pierce Transit and Metro Parks Tacoma offer bus service from downtown Tacoma to Point Defiance Park along Ruston Way on weekends during the summer. More information about the Downtown to Defiance Trolley here.

Let’s get out and enjoy the fun opportunities to explore and support our waterfront!

Managed social media for the Pierce County Auditor’s Office

The Pierce County Auditor’s Office hired Engage Northwest to manage social media on two contracts: in Fall 2016 during the November General Election and from February-June 2017 to manage social media for all of their services – licensing, recording, animal services and elections.

As a part-time contractor, Liz Satterthwaite created and published content daily on the Auditor’s social media channels, including setting up the Instagram page.

The types of posts included original pictures, videos, graphics, links, and status updates. Liz monitored social media and responded to comments.

Results

Up arrow with 33%During this time, the number of Facebook fans increased by 33.4% (almost 200 new fans). Social media encouraged Pierce residents to vote – more people registered and voted in the November 2016 election in Pierce County’s history. (See PCTV’s episode “Social media’s impact on the Pierce County General Election“).

Social media also encouraged candidates to run for political office. In May 2017, the most local candidates filed for office in an “odd-year” election (no national races). Which Facebook post received the highest social engagement? It occurred when one candidate decided to withdraw from a race after the withdrawal deadline:

Digital screen in the lobby

Using Canva, Liz created slides for a digital screen in the Auditor’s Office.  The digital screen provides information to customers in the lobby, answering questions about car tabs, passports, pet licenses, voting, and more.

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Staffed meetings and events

Liz attended meetings and events with the Auditor, including voter registration at a local high school, get out the disability vote, television interviews, and a community open house about Pierce County’s new voting system.

Pictures and videos

Liz took and edited pictures and videos, uploading them from the office and field. For example, she filmed the Auditor giving voting tips at five voting centers in Pierce County and regularly took pictures of customers, voters and employees. Some of the most engaged posts featured the employees in the Auditor’s Office.

Photo of Animal Control Officers Recognition Week.

The County Council recognizes Pierce County’s Animal Control Officers.

Thank you to the wonderful team at the Auditor’s Office!

Here is a compilation of photos from the November 2016 General Election.

Pierce County scores with new voting system

Photo of new digital scanner

New digital scanner

Pierce County is the first county in Washington to adopt an innovative voting system, Clear Ballot. It’s faster and more reliable — a slam dunk for elections! You can see Clear Ballot in action at an open house and demonstration on Thursday, March 30 from 5 – 7 p.m.

Digital technology

How does Clear Ballot work? A digital scanner takes a picture of each ballot. If a ballot has an issue, election workers can resolve the problem on a computer screen. No more troubles with wet or torn ballots! In the past, election workers would remake an unreadable ballot by hand. In the November 2016 General Election, over 50,000 ballots were remade — this new digital technology will save lots of time and effort!

“To say that we’re excited is an understatement,” says Julie Anderson, Pierce County Auditor in a press release.

In addition, voting centers will provide digital accessible voting units for voters living with disabilities.

Damon Townsend, Elections Supervisor, shows how the digital scanning works in this video:

What does the new system mean for voters?

Pierce County Elections and voters will use Clear Ballot for the first time in the August 1, 2017 Primary. The election will continue to be vote-by-mail, but the ballot will look different. Instead of connecting an arrow, voters will fill in an oval.

Say good-bye to this old election equipment and ballot!

 

Technology makes it easier

_...we intend to leverage technology to make government more accessible and convenient for our residents._Clear Ballot is just one way the Auditor’s Office uses new technology to make voting and licensing easier for residents.

License pets, renew car tabs and search for recorded documents online. On the go? Update voter registration, contact elected officials and find the closest drop box wherever you are with the mobile app, Civic Pierce County.

Social media also is a “new technology” that helps residents know about and communicate with government. Facebook posts and tweets encouraged Pierce County residents to register and vote during the November 2016 election. It will continue to be a great way to engage community! Keep informed and get involved in local government — follow the Auditor’s Facebook and Twitter pages!

Attend an open house to see Clear Ballot in action: March 30

In this season of “March madness” cheer for Pierce County’s innovative election team and new voting system! You can learn more and participate in hands-on demonstrations at a March 30 open house:

Thursday, March 30 from 5 to 7 p.m.
Pierce County Election Center
2501 S. 35th St. , Suite C, Tacoma

For more information

  • Pierce County Auditor’s press release: “Clear Ballot is the clear winner for Pierce County Elections” (March 1, 2017).
  • News Tribune article: “In the next county election, you’ll vote with ovals instead of arrows”  (March 15, 2017).
  • News Tribune article: “Connecting the arrow on your ballot a thing of the past for Pierce County voters” (November 25, 2016).
  • Pierce County Auditor’s webpage.
  • Clear Ballot’s website.

* Disclaimer – Engage Northwest is a social media contractor with the Pierce County Auditor’s Office. The pictures in this post are available on the Auditor’s Facebook page.

Glad to help nonprofits at PR Gives Back

Fun brainstorming communications strategies and tactics with local nonprofits at PR Gives Back today! The South Sound group of the PRSA Puget Sound Chapter and WA Nonprofits sponsored this free event at the STAR Center. It marks the third year the groups have held this event in the South Sound. I’ve also been involved in the other two events. It’s a great way to give back to the community with free public relations counseling.

Photo of PR Gives Back roundtable discussion

PR Gives Back roundtable discussion

About PR Gives Back

PR Gives Back is Cindy Sharpe’s gift to our region. Cindy Sharpe, APR, was involved in PR Gives Back in Tampa, FL. When she moved to Puget Sound, Cindy introduced this wonderful idea to us — thank you! PR professionals volunteer two hours of their time to help a nonprofit. About 20 nonprofits participate in each event. This year the event planning committee included Cindy, Jennifer Aalgaard, Victoria Lane, Libby Catalinich and Liz Glavish — thank you, all! Well done!

Last year, PR Gives Back was held in Seattle, and the event is planned to take place in Seattle again in early 2017. Watch the PRSA website for more details.