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Polls see long lines in early morning; second jump expected in afternoon

Plus: more than 650,000 Minnesotans voted early; Twin Cities rental market stays strong; fisherman lost in Boundary Waters; and more.

Voters waiting in line in the Snelling-Hamline neighborhood of St. Paul on Tuesday morning.
MinnPost photo by Corey Anderson

Voting mostly going pretty well so far! The Star Tribune’s Shannon Prather, Liz Sawyer and Patrick Condon write: “Voters lined up early Tuesday at polling places across Minnesota, standing in lines that stretched into parking lots and around buildings even before polls opened at 7 a.m. as the long and divisive presidential campaign finally came to an end. … Poll volunteers at several precincts said lines started forming at 6:30 a.m. and doors opened to large crowds. The crowds thinned as the morning wore on though some precincts saw a bump at lunch time. Volunteers expect lines to pick up again after 4 p.m. as workers head home for the day.”

Could portend heavy turnout. WCCO reports: “Before polls opened on Election Day, more than 650,000 Minnesotans had already voted by absentee ballot, crushing previous records. … The number represents nearly 20 percent of the state’s registered voters. Minnesota also has same-day voter registration. … On Tuesday morning, voters were streaming into polling places at a steady pace. One polling location in the St. Paul suburb of Roseville had dozens of people in line as polls opened at 7 a.m. … The high-drama presidential race brought many people to the polls. There is also a high-stakes fight for control of the Legislature, and some congressional races around the Twin Cities suburbs and in northeastern Minnesota have yielded millions of dollars in attack ads.”

Rental market still h-o-t. The Star Tribune’s Jim Buchta reports: “Demand for rental apartments in the Twin Cities metro continues to defy expectations. … Across the 13-county metro, the average vacancy rate declined to 2.5 percent during the third quarter, according to a report from Marquette Advisors. … That was down from 2.9 percent during the previous quarter and a slight increase compared with last year. … Vacancies have remained below 3 percent for several consecutive quarters despite a broad presumption that an influx of new units would put a drag on the absorption of new units.”

Does not sound good. The Duluth News Tribune reports: “Authorities searching for a missing Duluth man in the eastern Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness located a partially submerged canoe and other items believed to have belonged to the man, authorities reported Tuesday. … The Cook County Sheriff’s Office was notified at about 3 p.m. Monday that 59-year-old Michael Raymond Hickey had failed to report to work after a fishing trip to Pine Lake in the BWCAW over the weekend. Hickey had left Friday and was supposed to return Sunday, Cook County Sheriff Pat Eliasen said in a news release.”

In other news…

Aren’t we all just impostors when you really get down to it? “Women claim man who romanced them was impostor” [KARE]

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What this forest could really use is a bunch of water bottles piled up: “Artist aims to show Landscape Arboretum in a new light” [MPR]

Those things are expensive: “Maynard man sentenced for breaking into restaurant to steal ribs” [West Central Tribune]

Seeking donations: “Bryant Square Park unveils community mural” [Southwest Journal]

Get ON the road! “SUV drives on Lake Calhoun path, hits and drags jogger” [Star Tribune]

Impressive: “Stillwater man climbs Main Street stairs 205 times” [Pioneer Press]

Interesting look at what became of the kids in this seminal music video: “The Lost Children of ‘Runaway Train’” [MEL Magazine]