As Election Day approaches here in eastern Maine and around the nation, here's what you need to know in order to cast your ballot on Nov. 6.

In Maine, you can register to vote anytime, including on Election Day. Okay, first things first ...

Here's who you have to be to register:

  • A United States citizen
  • At least 17 years old (as long as you're going to be 18 on Election Day)
  • A resident of the Maine town in which you register

 Here's where you can register:

  • At your town office, just make sure you know when it's open for business. It varies by town, and some offices are only open two or three days a week. In Bangor, new voters can register at City Hall during regular business hours, which are 8 a.m. to 4:30  p.m., Monday-Friday. In Brewer, City Hall is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday-Friday, and the Ellsworth city clerk's office is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • At the polls on Election Day. In Bangor, all voting takes place at the Bangor Civic Center, located at 100 Dutton Street. You can also register at the Civic Center during early voting, which will take place Oct. 29-31 and Nov. 1 from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.
  • At any Department of Motor Vehicles office. The Bangor DMV is located at the Airport Mall on Union Street. You can also get voter registration forms at most federal agency buildings or at voter registration drives.
  • There is no deadline to register in person, however  if you want to register to vote by mail or through a voter registration drive, the cut-off date is the close of business on the 21st day before the election. This year, that date is Tuesday, October 16, 2012.

Here's what you need to register:

  • A photo identification, such as a driver's license, passport or state identification card.
  • If your identification doesn't have your current address, you'll need proof of residency, such as a utility bill or a checkbook to register to vote in a particular town.

Now that I'm registered, where do I vote?

  • It varies from town to town. Just check with your local election officials. Election Day polls in Bangor are open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Early voting is also offered in select communities, including Bangor.
  • You can also vote by absentee ballot, and anyone can do it. You don't need a reason. Here are the specifics.

For whom should I vote?

  • That's completely up to you. Just get out there and do it!


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