Add Sen. Ernest F. Hollings (D-S.C.) to the list of contenders who will participate in the straw poll to be conducted at the Maine Democratic convention on Oct. 1.

Hollings was a non-starter in Maine until he went to Portland for the National Governors' Association meeting last month. He apparently impressed several Maine politicians with his performance at a session on education sponsored by Democratic governors.

Among those who came away thinking that Hollings has a future in presidential politics was Rodney Quinn, Maine's secretary of state. Quinn has since taken the lead in organizing the state in behalf of the Democratic dark horse.

Hollings' schedule this week reflects his new priority. He was in New Hampshire yesterday and will be moving between there and Maine through Saturday.

Sen. Alan Cranston (D-Calif.) has targeted the Maine straw poll for a major push, and former vice president Walter F. Mondale is doing the same. Sen. John Glenn (D-Ohio), who recently announced that he would make no special efforts in future straw polls, is reported to be working hard at organizing in the state, but his aides say that effort is not aimed at winning the Oct. 1 balloting.