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Tompkins County Opens Applications for Tourism Grants

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Officials in Tompkins County have opened the application period for their Spring 2020 round of tourism grant funding, intended for organizations planning celebrations or projects with the potential to attract visitors in need of financial support from the Tompkins County Tourism Program.

There are four possible categories of funding:

Tourism Project Grants

  • Fund efforts that draw visitors to Tompkins County for overnight stays or accomplish other critical actions listed in the 2020 Strategic Tourism Plan.
  • Maximum award: $25,000
  • Applications due: Thursday, February 27, 2020

Tourism Marketing and Advertising Grants

  • Provide a dollar for dollar match for marketing and advertising campaigns that target tourists whose visits are likely to result in overnight stays.
  • Maximum award: $5,000
  • Applications due: Thursday, February 27, 2020

Community Celebrations Grants

  • Support local events that convey our unique culture and history. Community Celebrations are free, open to all, and planned by community members.
  • Maximum award: $3,000
  • Applications due: Thursday, February 27, 2020

Tourism Capital Grants

  • Support major investments in visitor-generating projects such as theaters, museums, and other major cultural and recreational attractions. The funds can be used for design, renovation, and new building projects; investments in unique permanent installations such as exhibits; and feasibility studies of potential capital projects.
  • Typical award range: $5,000 to $50,000
  • Applications due: Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Grant guidelines and applications are available at

A workshop for potential grant applicants has been planned for Thursday, January 23, from 2:00 to 4:00 pm, at the Ithaca/Tompkins County Convention & Visitors Bureau, 904 East Shore Drive, Ithaca, NY 14850.

The workshop is free and open to all. RSVP to

The Tompkins County Tourism Program annually invests over $2.5 million in local hotel room occupancy tax dollars in community-based tourism to promote economic development and enhance quality of life.

This program is guided by the Strategic Tourism Planning Board. Tourism grants have supported the activities of dozens of loca organizations contributing to local tourism and community vitality.

In 2018 tourism in Tompkins County supported 3,700 local jobs, generated $227 million in visitor spending, and raised more than $16.6 million in local tax revenues.

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