Last week the headline on the end of qualifying for the Port St. Joe municipal election read something along the lines of “qualifying, election end.”

Last week the headline on the end of qualifying for the Port St. Joe municipal election read something along the lines of “qualifying, election end.”

As of last Tuesday, the penultimate day of candidate qualifying, all three incumbents lacked a challenger.

One other person had picked up the paperwork from Supervisor of Elections John Hanlon, but had yet to return it.

Hanlon was also mystified, noting that usually he fields numerous inquiries about the qualifying process, many anonymous and many from folks he will never hear from again.

But, still, three seats and no challengers.

With noon Wednesday the deadline, which also happens to be the approximate time this paper should be a on a press, forward thinking, we would like to boast, was required.

However, that proactive approach blew up when Wednesday noon arrived and there was not just one, but two challengers prepared to make a run.

Mayor/Commissioner Bo Patterson was the incumbent left with no challenger, earning re-election to his second term as mayor, his fourth on the Commission.

Only Commissioner Rex Buzzett has been on the board longer.

“I am humbled,” Patterson said, adding he was heading out to pick up his signs. “I thank the people for the confidence they have placed in me.

“I am just going to continue what I’ve been doing.”

Commissioner William Thursbay, seeking a third term in the Group I seat, will be challenged by Carl Hopper, a political newcomer.

Eric Langston, also new to the political arena, will challenge Commissioner David Ashbrook for the Group II seat.

Early voting will be held April 29 through May 6, 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. ET at the Supervisor of Elections Office on Long Avenue.

The Fire Station will be open 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. ET on Election Day, May 9.

The last day to register to vote is April 10.

.