By Alex Sanz / 11News  

HOUSTON—This final weekend before Election Day found the four candidates for mayor of Houston on the march and in search of votes.

Democrat Annise Parker gave volunteers a Halloween pep talk at her campaign headquarters in the Houston Heights on Saturday.

“This has been a marathon, but the finish line is just ahead, and I’ve got my finishing kick,” she said.  “A lot of young men and women are involved in the campaign. They’re feeling it, too. And they’re ready to win.”

Handshakes are one of the most visible parts of any campaign.  And there were plenty this weekend.  Democrats Gene Locke and Peter Brown spent part of theirs at the Southeast Precinct Judges Council Luncheon at the Tom Bass Center in southeast Houston.

“We have to somehow get more people motivated to exercise their democratic perogrative and vote,” said Brown.  “It’s very important to make democracy work.”

“We’re trying to intensify the message to make sure people understand first, the importance of the vote on November 3, but then to understand the difference between the candidates,” said Locke.

At his campaign office in West Houston, Roy Morales, the race’s lone Republican, took a different attack and called voters at home.

“It has seemed like a really long time,” he said.  “But it also seems like it was just yesterday, too. And at this time it’s just a matter of full-speed ahead.”

Political experts say what began as a wide-open race has tightened.  Peter Brown led the field last week.  Now?  A recent sample of voters found Annise Parker with a strong surge of support.  Gene Locke is doing better.  Peter Brown is showing signs of weakness.

Observers say there is still time for an Election Day surprise.  Each candidate said they were confident headed into Tuesday.  But two of them may have to pick up where they leave off and campaign for a December run-off.

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