Wednesday, October 29, is the last day to register to vote in the midterm elections on November 4.

Generally, midterm elections generate less media buzz and lower voter turnouts than their every-four-year counterparts. But that doesn't mean they aren't important. This fall, Vermont voters—meaning you!—will elect six statewide officeholders: governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general, secretary of state, treasurer and auditor of accounts. The state's lone representative to the U.S. House is also up for election.

On an even more local level, this year voters will select 150 members of the House of Representatives and 30 members of the Senate. In the last election, three candidates ran for two state representative positions for Washington-7, which represents the towns of Warren, Waitsfield, Fayston, Moretown and Duxbury. This year, four candidates are battling it out for two spots, not only giving Valley voters more options but upping the ante for door-to-door calls and debates leading up to the big day.

It takes courage to challenge an incumbent, and newcomers to state politics Heidi Spear and Ed Read likely thought long and hard before deciding to run against current Valley representatives Maxine Grad and Adam Greshin. They're taking this election seriously—as are Grad and Greshin—and the discourse that has come out of the competition has brought more nuanced positions on issues that are especially important to Vermonters, such as property tax reform and the single-payer health care system.

Unlike races in other counties and states, all of the candidates have kept their campaigns civil, which isn't always easy to do in small communities where it sometimes seems like everyone knows everything about everyone. Residents would do well to recognize the efforts of their neighbors, coworkers and friends this election season by showing up at the polls in November.

For those who aren't already on their town's voter checklist, registering is as simple as stopping by the town office before next Wednesday and filling out a form. Or, if in-person interaction scares you, sites like will find the correct form and prepare it for you with information you enter online, so that all you have to do it print it out and mail it in. It's not too late!