The Rhode Island Division of Motor Vehicles on Friday released the nearly 1,000 design proposals for the state license plate.
The state said it got 940 submissions, but only one — a plate by South Kingstown resident Willem Van Lancker — became the state’s new license plate. Van Lancker’s design, inspired by the current “Wave” plate, won out in a public vote over four other finalists, getting 52 percent of the vote.
But hundreds of other people had their own ideas, and they ranged from the sincere (lots of bridges and seafood) to the ironic (potholes). One designer offered a crayoned sketch of a lobster chasing a shark. Others featured roosters, clams, or flowers. Dunkin’ Donuts, coffee milk, and Del’s Lemonade made appearances as well.
Van Lancker’s winner should start rolling out around late summer, the state said. The move doesn’t affect the various charity plates, but Van Lancker’s new plate will replace the standard “Wave” plate for around 750,000 vehicles in the state. People will pay an extra $8 when they renew their registration. The two-year cycle means that the current plate, on the roads for the past two and a half decades, should be gone by 2024 — and it will give law enforcement a better chance of determining which cars aren’t properly registered.
You can scroll through all 940 designs below: