It's Been a Lonely Winter for the Iowa Caucuses

Ezra Koenig strums the guitar on large stage. A crowd of 50 plus people sit on the risers behind him. Dozens of people stand on the ground facing him. Above Ezra there is an American Flag, an Iowa state flag, and a sign reads:
Free ezra koenig concert in Iowa

When Arnie (Kevin McHale) and Tina (Jenna Ushkowitz) from Glee came through Iowa City in 2012 to stump for Obama during the election season, I was there with my friend Gail. We can’t recall exactly, but apparently I asked her if she wanted to go, and she said “yeah, duh.” Even though they were not Lea Michele, or even among our favorite characters from the show, we were still tweens with eyes and ears and televisions. “It wasn’t always A-listers,” Gail remembered. “But [there’d be celebrities] who were relevant enough that I’d go. Enough to get people excited about voting.”

Free concerts, star sightings, and parties—these were the perks of hosting the nation’s first caucus. Iowans like us might run into big names at any moment, during election season. Growing up, my friend Daye had found it unremarkable that the Clintons once spent their Fourth of July in her hometown of Clear Lake (pop. 7,000), she told me. 

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