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Community Grants
The Maine Bicentennial Commission is offering a total of $375,000 in Community Grants to support the interests, needs, and creativity of citizens and communities throughout Maine as they plan local commemorations of the Bicentennial.

Grant Application Review Process

We welcome applications for Community Grants from a wide variety of organizations and individuals, from all over Maine, seeking to involve their community in projects relevant to Maine’s Bicentennial. See below for guidance on Minimal Grant Requirements, Types of Projects that May be Funded, Who is Eligible to Apply, Priority Projects and Themes.

Grant applications are to be submitted to the Maine Bicentennial Commission through the Maine Arts Commission, which will administer the program applications. To begin, you will need to create an account and fill out an application here:


Program applications will be reviewed by a panel consisting of representatives from the Maine Cultural Affairs Council (7) and from practicing educators representing the field (2).

There will be three application cycles with application deadlines of:

  • September 1, 2019
  • February 1, 2020 
  • June 1, 2020 

application review

The Grant application screening committee will make awards based on the priorities listed below, and based upon ensuring a representative distribution of funds across the state. Support for communities that lack existing capacity to raise funds for these purposes will be prioritized.

Notification of awards will be made within 4 weeks of the deadline for each application cycle. Applications not approved for funding in one cycle may be resubmitted for a future cycle.   

All funds must be expended by March 30, 2021.

Minimal Grant Requirements

  • All commemoration activities must involve a public component for participation.
  • All grant recipients must provide a photo of their activity to be shared on the Maine200 social media channels and other bicentennial promotional materials.
  • All grant recipients must complete a BRIEF report summarizing how funds were expended.

Examples of the types of projects that may be funded

  • Lectures, storytelling workshops, discussion groups and other public programs
  • Parades, fairs, festivals, exhibitions and other public events
  • History projects—digitization of collections, publications, oral history initiatives
  • Curriculum development
  • Student projects and activities
  • Projects to preserve, process and/or interpret local collections and historical sites
  • Concerts, performances, competitions, commissions, and other arts projects

Examples of who is eligible to apply

  • Maine community non-profit organizations such as local historical societies, libraries, etc.  
  • Local Maine government institutions such as federally recognized Indian tribal government or state/local/city governments
  • Local Maine Schools such as public Pre-K to Gr. 12 schools, public Charter Schools, and public institutions of higher education
  • Private individuals or for-profit organizations WITH any of the partners listed above
  • Organizations that have not yet received a Bicentennial Grant

priority will be given to projects that...

  • Are directly tied to the commemoration of Maine’s Bicentennial
  • Are supported through local matching funds or “in-kind” contributions
  • Are designed to reach and engage as many members of our diverse communities as possible
  • Create lasting resources that will benefit communities beyond the Bicentennial
  • Involve multiple community partners (including schools)
  • Have strong plans for public outreach and are free, subsidized, and/or accessible at a reasonable cost for participants

we also strongly encourage projects to reflect the following themes:

  • Living in Maine 
  • The Business of Maine 
  • Maine Leads 
  • The Maine Character

For more information about each of these themes, take a look here.