Second in a series of profiles of Boston’s 12 mayoral candidates.
On a recent morning, Felix G. Arroyo started his campaign day around 7:30 outside a Dunkin’ Donuts in Brighton’s Oak Square, brightly greeting customers fueling up before work. After an hour, an aide checked her watch, and he hustled off to the Sisters of St. Joseph for 30 minutes at a March on Washington commemoration. “Pray for me,’’ he whispered to one of the nuns, before rushing away again. Next was a radio show. After that, a gun control rally.
In a day that ended well past 8:30 p.m., he never stopped rushing, and there was a reason. The mayoral candidate doesn’t have much in his campaign war chest compared with some of the other contenders, so he’s relying on something else.
“I’m blessed with a lot of energy,” he said.
In a crowded mayoral field where several of the other 11 candidates have amassed large stockpiles for campaign spending, Arroyo is banking on a ground game that outpaces his opponents. His hope is to secure some 25,000 votes and one of the top two spots in the Sept. 24 preliminary election.
As the only Latino candidate in the race — and at 34, the youngest — he is trying to make history in Boston, as the first minority to lead a city where minorities make up the majority of residents. But more than that, Arroyo is on a difficult quest to prove that the route to the mayor’s office is paved not solely with money, but with long days, hard hours, and plenty of face time with potential voters.
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