Calhoun: Wake-Up Call

Politics get raw at the Hamburger Mary's debate

Head to Hamburger Mary's -- and then find Club M.

The hottest debate-watching party in town tonight could be the ACLU's gathering at Hamburger Mary's.

For the last John McCain/Barack Obama debate, close to a hundred people -- college students to grandparents -- gathered to cheer on their candidate and raise $500 for the campaign against Amendment 48. People left with yard signs, bumper stickers and information about the amendment. More important, according to the ACLU's Erik Maulbetsch, people were moved -- "moved to talk to their family, friends and neighbors about the ballot measures, understanding that our responsibility doesn't lie solely in voting for the president on November 4, but in voting down the ballot. They left knowing what's at stake in Colorado should these divisive and deceptive measures pass."

And then, of course, there were the candidate bingo games, with Palin Bingo the clear favorite. "You can ask anyone in attendance if they had a good time," Maulbetsch says, "and I am sure they will tell you, with a wink, 'You beeeeetcha.'"

Hamburger Mary's will have both McCain and Obama bingo ready to go tonight, and the restaurant is anticipating such a crowd that the party will be held in Club M, next door to the restaurant at 708 East 17th Avenue. Doors open at 6:30 p.m., the debate starts at 7. The room has a big screen plus a cash bar just for debate watchers, with drink specials and snacks. The ACLU also promises speakers who'll discuss the dangers of two ballot issues: Amendments 46 and 48.

Sound fun? You beeeeetcha. -- Patricia Calhoun