In January, the Penobscot Bay Ringers embarked on a capital campaign to purchase five octaves of Malmark handbells and Malmark choirchimes® — a total of 122 instruments. Thanks to a tremendous response by the local community, only three handbells and three choirchimes remained unsponsored as of April 8.

“Penobscot Bay Ringers is touched and deeply appreciative of the overwhelming support we have received in this campaign,” said Leigh Smith, the group’s co-founder and board member.

To help close out the campaign in a timely fashion, an anonymous donor has come forward with a gift to match up to $1,000 in donations received for the Give-A-Bell Campaign by April 30. This combination of funds would allow Penobscot Bay Ringers to place their complete order of instruments and supporting equipment with Malmark, the manufacturer.

Bell sponsors are able to honor or memorialize loved ones with personal inscriptions on the bell handles. Donors of choirchimes® will have their names inscribed on a plaque attached to the chime case. Sponsorships can be contributed by individuals, by families or by organizations.

After only two years, Penobscot Bay Ringers has made 19 appearances throughout Midcoast Maine and beyond. Most notable was an invitation to ring at the Boston Handbell Festival at Old South Church in May 2010. The group has staged three full-length concerts and has also performed at a variety of charitable events and private functions. Two upcoming concerts dates are Saturday, May 21 at the First Congregational Church of Camden; and Sunday, May 22 at Bartlett Woods Retirement Community in Rockland.

To make a financial contribution to the Give-A-Bell Campaign, call Smith at 230-6628; send email to Amy Rollins at penobscotbayringers@gmail.com;, or write to Penobscot Bay Ringers, P.O. Box 82, Rockport, ME 04856.

VillageSoup Art/Entertainment Editor Dagney Ernest can be reached at 207-594-4401 or by email to dernest@villagesoup.com.