Historic Colorado Contest asks Coloradans to help design state's 150th anniversary license plate

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LAKEWOOD, Monday, Sept. 19, 2022 -- From Buffalo Bill Cody to Molly Brown and Dr. Justina Ford, Coloradans have a habit of making history, and with the DMV’s newest effort, Centennial State residents have another opportunity to do just that.

The Colorado Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) is pleased to launch the Historic Colorado Contest, a license plate design contest aimed to honor the state’s 150th anniversary with a commemorative license plate.

“This is a great kickoff to create an exciting way to celebrate 150 years of Colorado history and showcase Colorado’s talented artists. As we gear up for Colorado’s sesquicentennial in 2026 we are planning many more ways to celebrate our state,” Gov. Jared Polis said. “In Colorado, creativity and inspiration are all around us, and we are excited to see the great designs Coloradans share. This new license plate honors the legacy of Coloradans who helped shape our great state as we look forward towards a bright future together.”

“Coloradans are proud of the state we call home,” DMV Senior Director Electra Bustle said. “Our state has a rich history and we want to honor the legacy of those Coloradans who laid the foundation for our success, and with the Historic Colorado Contest, we will.”

The Historic Colorado Contest, also known as the Great License Plate Design Contest, will accept submissions from Monday, Sept. 19 to Wednesday, Nov. 30 and is open to anyone who lives or studies in Colorado. The contest will have two divisions — 13 and older, and under 13.

Up to 10 finalists per division will be selected by a committee with a final, public vote on the top three designs. The winners will get huge bragging rights, the DMV will feature the artists in all media releases and the winners will each receive a special commemorative license plate and a $1,000 grant.

Entries will be judged on how well the artwork captures Colorado and its history, the artistic quality and its originality, and how well that design translates into becoming a Colorado license plate.

The Historic Colorado Contest is free to enter and each participant can submit up to three entries, each of which need to be the participant’s original artwork. Coloradans interested in participating in the Historic Colorado contest can visit DMV.Colorado.gov/HistoricColorado for complete information, terms and conditions, and templates for drafting submissions. 

The DMV will accept a variety of file formats such as EPS, SVG, AI, PDF, and high resolution TIFF and JPEG (3.375 in x 2.125 in at 600 dpi) for entries, and asks that submissions not have any watermarks. Coloradans should email their designs and entry form to dor_HistoricColorado@state.co.us

The Historic Colorado Contest is a low-cost effort to honor Colorado’s history and 150th anniversary with a commemorative license plate. Voting for the winning designs is anticipated to begin in early 2023.  

Entry Packet/Terms and Conditions

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