Over 5,000 line up to see Bernie Sanders in Yakima

Bernie Sanders supporters from West Valley waited in line since 10 a.m., even though the senator wasn't expected to speak until 7 p.m.

YAKIMA, Wash. -- Although the Sundome can hold nearly 8,000 people, those free first-come-first-serve tickets to see Bernie Sanders speak came at a cost. The price was time spent waiting outside, as supporters braved long lines to get inside.

"No one's been to Yakima, so I jumped on it. I dipped out of school. I ran here. It's so good. I'm so excited," said Patrick Dougherty, a Bernie Sanders supporter from West Valley who had been waiting since 10 a.m.

The buzz around Bernie, fueled mostly because the democratic presidential candidate was putting Yakima back on the map. Sanders is the first presidential candidate to visit Yakima in more than a decade. Supporters turned out from all over the state; some were from Ellensburg and the Tri-cities.

"I was like, no way, he's coming to Yakima? And I was like, I'm here!" said Eva Rosenow, supporter from Sunnyside.

Loyal followers saying Sanders has a message they share.

"It's just amazing to see what the nation can become, what everything can change to. What can be done to help us all," said Dougherty.

But not everyone was impressed -- or feeling the Bern. A protester from Zillah was camped on the side of the road since 1 p.m. to prove a point.

"I'm out here just to protest Bernie Sanders," said Steve Laws. "He doesn't understand economics. He just has a simplistic message that appeals to people that want something for nothing."

But despite the protester who showed up, campaign staff say the 7,000 people attending was far more than what they hoped.

"He has just the right message for this country, it's now or never," said a Bernie Sanders' supporter in line.

An important message, one supporters wanted to see to believe.

To hear what Bernie Sanders said at the Yakima campaign rally, click here.

Voters who officially declare themselves affiliated with the Democratic Party can participate in the caucus on Saturday. To see more details, click here.

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