BIDDEFORD, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- The Main Street Challenge brought three new businesses to downtown Biddeford last year and it worked so well city officials are doing it all over again.
Dahlia's Delights vegetarian cafe, Elements bookstore and cafe, and Tote Road hand carved wood store all won last year's challenge and opened within the last several months downtown.
Heart of Biddeford, a local non-profit, is putting on the challenge for the second year. Its aim is to bring more small businesses downtown. Winners of challenge benefit from a $10,000 loan from the city and four months of free rent among other incentives.
Michael Macomber is the owner of Elements and opened his business in March after winning the Main Street Challenge last year.
"Every day I hear someone say how wonderful it is that something like this is in Biddeford and that makes it worth it," Macomber said.
Heart of Biddeford is hopeful future winners of the challenge will continue to draw business owners who want to be part of the community for an extended period of time.
"People are drawn to the area who may not have been downtown for a while," Heart of Biddeford Executive Director Delilah Poupore said. "People are coming from Kennebunkport and Portland to come see what the buzz is about."
Poupore said the challenge so far this year has drawn interest from as far away as New York City.
The deadline for businesses to file their pitch is October 18th. For more information about the challenge, click here.