Countdown to the U.S. Senate debate in Springfield - CBS 3 Springfield - WSHM

Countdown to the U.S. Senate debate in Springfield

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In just hours, Sen. Scott Brown and Democrat challenger, Elizabeth Warren will face-off right here in Springfield.

The debate is coordinated by the Springfield Public Forum as well as television, radio and print outlets here in Western Mass.

They are calling it a labor of love. It has taken months of work and planning and Wednesday the nation's eyes will be on Springfield and the Senate debate.

"When we started this I thought this was going to be the most watched senatorial race in the country," said President of the Springfield Public Forum Dr. Paul Hetzel.

Wednesday one of the most anticipated Senate debates in the country will put the spotlight on Springfield and Western Mass.

"It's important for the citizens of Springfield, this is once every six years and it's a huge, huge event," Hetzel said.

It's so huge that the more than 2,500 tickets that were available were snatched up within a matter of hours so thousands could see Brown and his challenger, Warren, face off at Symphony Hall.

They've already met twice before, but this time, Brown and Warren will have to answer to the Western Mass voters.

"The questions have all been submitted from residents of Western Massachusetts," Hetzel said.

This Senate debate will make downtown quite busy. Doors open at 5 p.m., but don't be late because at 6:30 the doors will be locked.

Parking on Court Street in front of Symphony Hall will not be an option. The parking meters will be bagged up, but there will be parking options elsewhere.

"The forum has negotiated with the Springfield Parking Authority a $2 parking fee," Hetzel said.

SPA lots can be found just around the corner from Symphony Hall.

Media outlets from Western Mass and further will be filling Court Street to cover the debate. And supporters are expected to line the streets and court square outside Symphony hall.

The outcome of the debate plays a huge role in deciding whether the Republicans or Democrats control the U.S. Senate.

Although the stakes are high, Springfield Public Forum officials already want to do it again.

"One thing we hope is that this event will be a template for future events," Hetzel said.

CBS 3 Springfield will be broadcasting the debate live from 7-8 p.m.

We will also be live tweeting throughout the debate, just follow us at CBS 3 Springfield on Twitter to join in.  

Following the debate there will be a poll on You tell us who you think won the debate.

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