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Help make the Lightning (...and Raw Charge) officially "Best of the Bay"

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The 2015 Best of the Bay readers survey features several ties to the Bolts organization... Oh, and to Raw Charge as well.

Jon Cooper is on the ballot as best local coach.
Jon Cooper is on the ballot as best local coach.
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

A couple of weeks back, I brought up local indie newspaper Creative Loafing and its annual Best of the Bay voter survey. What the deal was at the time was the nomination process; putting together who would be on the ballot for a voting period taking place from August to September. The focus was also on the subsection for the voter survey, entitled "People, Places and Politics" as it had relevance to Lightning fans for some of the categories.

Voting opened yesterday (August 6) for the nominees in said-category, and this is where Lightning fans should take the most interest because of who is on the ballot and under what categories.

Oh, and some of us Raw Charge critters are also on the "People, Places and Politics" ballot:

  • Lightning owner Jeff Vinik and the Tampa Bay Lightning are nominated under "Best Local Activist"
  • Owner Jeff Vinik is listed under "Best local citizen"
  • Tyler Johnson and Ondrej Palat are nominated as the best local tandem
  • Best Local Personality to Follow on Twitter is dotted with accounts of relevance to Bolts fans:
    -        Clark Brooks from here at Raw Charge
    - Erik Erlendsson(listed as "Eric")
    -        Matt Sammon, director of broadcasting for the Lightning
  • -        Steven Stamkos
    -        TBLightning (the offical team account)

  • Lightning Power Play Podcast is listed under Best Local Podcast
  • Best Local Nonprofit features the Tampa Bay Lightning foundation
  • USF Ice Hockey is nominated for Best Florida College Team
  • Of course the Bolts are nominated under Best Local Pro Sports team
  • Jon Cooper is a candidate for Best Local Coach
  • And while Barry Melrose is listed as Worst Local Coach, let's be fair - he's no longer coaching or local
  • Best Blogger has Clark Brooks (for his personal site) as well as Raw Charge (we're not a single blogger though)
  • Best Local Sportswriter features a slew of candidates:
    -        Bryan Burns from the Lightning
    -        Erik Erlendsson from the Tampa Tribune
    -        Joe Smith from the Tampa Bay Times
    -        Clark Brooks with us
    -        John Fontana (Hi!) with Raw Charge

There are other topic pages (and a lot of categories to vote on) on the Best of the Bay survey. The Lightning (or fans, or Amalie Arena among other things) may be nominated under different categories that I haven't looked through (Food and Drink, Goods and Services, and Arts and Entertainment).

I can't tell you who to vote for - there may be other writers or blogs you like more (coaches or sport teams too). I do want to say I appreciate those who got me nominated in the sportswriter category.

What I can tell you is that you have until September 8th to vote. Winners will be announced on September 23rd at a party at the Mahaffey Theater in St. Pete.