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14-year-old's entry in 'I Voted' sticker design contest goes viral

Hudson Rowan, 14, became one of six finalists in the Ulster County Board of Elections' contest to choose a new "I Voted" sticker with this design. His drawing went viral online and gathered more than 160,000 votes in the first two weeks of online voting. Photo courtesy of the Ulster County Board of Elections
Hudson Rowan, 14, became one of six finalists in the Ulster County Board of Elections' contest to choose a new "I Voted" sticker with this design. His drawing went viral online and gathered more than 160,000 votes in the first two weeks of online voting. Photo courtesy of the Ulster County Board of Elections

July 11 (UPI) -- A New York county's online contest to pick a new "I Voted" sticker is receiving added attention after an unusual entry from a local 14-year-old student went viral.

The Ulster County Board of Elections said more than 168,000 votes have been cast in this year's online contest to pick a new sticker, compared to only about 500 votes total in last year's inaugural contest.

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The vast majority of the votes thus far have been for local student Hudson Rowan's design, which features a multicolored, red-eyed human head atop spider legs next to the phrase, "I Voted."

Rowan's design had more than 157,500 votes as of Monday afternoon. The next most popular of the six options had about 6,300 votes. Voting lasts through the end of July.

"It's gone a little viral," Ashley Dittus, Democratic commissioner for Board of Elections, told the Times Herald-Record newspaper. "Hudson's design has struck a chord with people, at least online, and we are really having a good time watching all those people from Ulster County, and all over the place, engage with our website, engage with our contest."

Rowan said he was surprised by how the voting has gone so far.

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"I did not think I was going to get as much attention as I did," he said. "I thought since mine was very different from the others, I didn't think mine was going to get a lot of attention because of that, but I was wrong. It was exactly the opposite."

John Quigley, the Republican commissioner for the Ulster County Board of Elections, said Rowan's design struck a nerve with voters.

"Somebody tweeted, this is how voters feel about politics right now, and I thought it was almost like the best way to summarize it. It sort of is exactly how we all feel about politics right now," he said.

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