For the first time in state history, 17-year-olds will be eligible to vote in this month’s presidential primaries, as long as they will turn 18 by the November general elections.

Secretary of the State Denise Merrill issued a press release Thursday reminding 17-year-old residents they have until noon on April 23, the day before the primary, to register to vote with the Republican Party.

Merrill said that since the beginning of the year, more than 2,200 teenagers have registered to vote. Most of them, 1,123, have registered as unaffiliated voters. Meanwhile, 543 have registered as Republicans and 465 are now Democrats.

“It is encouraging to see that so many 17-year-olds are taking advantage of the opportunity to register to vote in advance of the Presidential Preference Primary,” Merrill said. “… It is important for young people to take ownership of the political process early, so they can turn into lifelong voters.”

For voter registration forms, absentee ballot applications, and a list of polling places, visit the secretary of the state’s website.