Governor McAuliffe Announces Matching Tourism Grants


Governor Terry McAuliffe announced today that more than $812,000 in matching grant funds will be awarded to 39 Virginia tourism initiatives, and six of those are here in Hampton Roads.

The grants are meant to help tourism entities attract more visitors through various means, such as growth, marketing, and expansion projects. The local organizations match the state grant funds by a minimum of 2:1 in order to support marketing projects.

Governor McAuliffe said, “Tourism is an industry that provides enormous opportunity to grow, diversify and build a new Virginia economy.  The Marketing Leverage Grant program is designed to spur job creation, economic development, and visitor spending through new or enhanced tourism products.  These grants are proven to increase visitation by creating marketing partnerships and effective marketing programs.”

Hampton Roads Recipients Include:

-Holiday Lights at the Beach and Santa’s Seaside Village, awarded $10,000

-Winter Blues Jazz Festival, Quirks of Art, awarded $5000

-Turn the Page: The First Ten Years of Hi-Fructose, Virginia MOCA, awarded $50,000

-Historic Smithfield Plantation marketing Expansion, awarded $4,400

-Olde Towne Portsmouth Brand Identity, Blog, and Promotion, awarded $5000

-Virginia Arts Festival’s 20th Season Celebration, awarded $50,000

According to the Governor’s office, tourism is an instant revenue generator for Virginia.

Which local tourist entities would you like to see flourish in 2016? Let us know!