The Maine Department of Transportation is hosting its own version of March Madness, the NCAA men’s basketball tournament that typically ensnares millions of Americans in office pools seeking to pick college basketball’s next champion.

“In the spirit of March Madness, MaineDOT is launching our own Bridge Bracket Madness!” the transportation agency said in a Facebook post Monday.

Mainers can vote for their favorite Maine bridge from a field of sixteen sweet bridges to start the 2019 tournament, the post said.

Opening-round matches pit Portland’s Casco Bay Bridge against the Artist Bridge at Sunday River in Newry, the Bailey Island Bridge (also known as the cribstone bridge) in Harpswell against the Portland Veterans Memorial Bridge, and the Penobscot Narrows Bridge and Observatory against the Richmond-Dresden Bridge over the Kennebec River, to name a few. The bracket is available on the department’s Facebook page, where two bridges will be pictured each day and people can choose their favorite by clicking on the picture.

The Penobscot Narrows and Observatory bridge and Maine Kennebec Bridge were facing off in the first round Tuesday.

Voters will narrow the field until two bridges will compete for the title of Maine’s most loved bridge.

The state says it will share updates on the MDOT’s Facebook page, Twitter and Instagram. The state has also posted a photo gallery on Facebook that will show visitors to the social media site what each bridge looks like.

Dennis Hoey can be contacted at 791-6365 or at:

[email protected]