Sykesville, Maryland won America’s Main Street contest with an unprecedented number of votes – the town of 4,400 with 44 small businesses garnered more than 125,000 votes in the national contest run by Independent We Stand, an organization that supports and promotes small businesses, and is sponsored by Stihl.

The town’s Downtown Sykesville Connection is part of the Maryland Main Street program and supports small businesses, property owners, heritage tourism, and historic preservation by managing a rich calendar of events, grant and facade improvement incentive programs, and beautification and promotion of Sykesville. Located along the Patapsco River, Sykesville celebrates and preserves its rich history through attractions like the S&P Railway model train displays and the Little Sykes Railway Park. Previously, Downtown Sykesville Connection was recognized in 2013 with an Achievement Award by the Maryland Municipal League.

Along with the honor of being America’s 2020 Main Street, Downtown Sykesville Connection will receive a $25,000 prize. Julie Della-Maria, Executive Director of the Downtown Sykesville Connection, will use the funds to support the district’s three dozen local small businesses through a grant program and it could not have come at a better time. Across all of Maryland’s main streets, small businesses that typically attract pedestrian shoppers and heritage tourists, have been particularly hard-hit by recent lockdown safety measures due to COVID-19. Gov. Larry Hogan’s Roadmap to Recovery now moving into lifting restrictions that will allow parks, some businesses, and personal service providers to gradually reopen.