Spokane 8th grader takes civic pride to a new level - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Spokane 8th grader takes civic pride to a new level

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This 13-year-old attends City Council every Monday. This 13-year-old attends City Council every Monday.
SPOKANE, Wash. -

Spokane City Council doesn't always deliver fireworks. Sometimes it can be a little dry, sometimes "it can be boring," says council president Ben Stuckart. There is a consistent cast of characters who keep coming back to make sure their voices are heard. But there's one oddball in the brash bunch that never stands up to shout. In fact, he stays hiding at the hearings, refusing to take the floor until we take him out of City Hall.

Gunnar Seabright is about as average an 8th Grader as you can find. He's into baseball, he plays football, he goes to school... and he lives for the Monday night City Council sessions. "It's interesting," Gunnar says. "It's something I'm passionate about."

It all started in May, when Gunnar asked his neighbor, City Council member Karen Stratton, to show him around City Hall. "I thought he must be really bored," Stratton told us. But that initial visit was an eye-opener for Gunnar. He fell in love with city policy, saying "you don't realize how much it impacts you until you see what sidewalk they put in, or what traffic light. It's everyday changes that you don't see."

So come Monday night, in a tiny corner of Spokane's City Hall you can find a young man glued to a council meeting. Despite what you may think, civic pride is alive and well. Thriving even.

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