SF Voters Have Unusual Options

San Francisco’s 588 polling places include bars, private clubs, shoe stores, and The Museum of Ice Cream.

In case you hadn’t noticed, it’s election day in San Francisco. 

Unlike many other parts of the country, our city is blessed with a plethora of polling places and ballot drop locations — 588 to be exact. With the world turned upside-down by the pandemic, and more public consciousness than ever about the importance of voting, an unusual selection of polling places have opened their doors for this election. 

Most voters will still end up at a traditional polling place, like garages, churches, libraries, rec centers, and police and fire stations. But others could find themselves voting in rather unconventional surroundings. Since San Francisco has so many overlapping districts (Supervisor, Assembly, Congress, BART Board, etc.), it’s best for voters to go to the polls in their home precinct, which you can look up on the SF Elections voter portal or this intimidating map.  

Supervisorial District 6, encompassing SoMa, Mission Bay, and the Tenderloin, has arguably the most enviable options. If you’ve never set foot in the exclusive Commonwealth Club, nearby voters can now make it their civic duty. D6 voters can also stop by The Eagle, San Francisco’s most famous leather bar, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, the Contemporary Jewish Museum, Sheikh Shoes, or the corporate headquarters of the design firm IDEO. 

The Randall Museum in Corona Heights is yet another scenic polling place. (Photo: Benjamin Schneider)

Nearby in District 3, which includes North Beach, the Financial District, and Chinatown, the Museum of Ice Cream and the S.F. Italian Athletic Club are open for voting. 

In District 10, which includes Bayview and Potreoro Hill, voters can catch a glimpse of the Rickshaw Bagworks factory, or the inner workings of Pure Skinz Aesthetics beauty salon. 

District 9, the Mission and Bernal Heights, has several arts organizations opening their doors to voters, including Southern Exposure, Endgames Improv, Gray Area, The Marsh, Brava Theater, and Mission Arts Center.

The Randall Museum and the lobby of the San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus are hosting ballots in District 8.

And in District 1, the Richmond District, voters can head to the Legion of Honor, the Balboa Theater, or the Columbarium, along with a selection of restaurants and bars. 

The full list of polling places, and information on which precinct you should go to, are available on the SF Elections website. 

Whether you’re dropping off your ballot in a musty garage, or filling it out in the stately Legion of Honor, just make sure you vote!

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