The Maine Bicentennial Commission has awarded a second round of community grants totaling $432,290 to 133 successful applicants for programs and events marking the 200th anniversary of statehood.

The grants will benefit bicentennial-themed projects such as the recording oral histories in Harpswell, an exhibit of Wabanaki artwork in Monson, an update of the Maine history curriculum in Rumford schools, a sidewalk chalk art festival in Kennebunk and a lineup of concerts, lectures and other events in Presque Isle.

The commission has awarded a total of $574,545 in grants for more than 160 projects across Maine, including $145,255 in grants awarded in the first round last October.

“The interest for our second round of grants was incredible and far exceeded our expectations,” said state Sen. Bill Diamond, D-Windham, commission chairman. “We are so pleased to see the excitement around Maine’s 200th anniversary of statehood.”

Diamond said that while the coronavirus outbreak has caused some bicentennial events to be postponed, he is confident that the celebration will resume when public gatherings are safe again.

A final round of grants will be awarded this summer. The deadline to apply is June 1. Visit for more information.

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