~Virginia Tourism Corporation to provide $1.45 million through ARPA Sports Marketing and Meeting & Convention Incentive Programs for sports and meetings tourism marketing and development ~
RICHMOND – The Virginia Tourism Corporation (VTC) has awarded $1.45 million to 83 events through the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) Sports Marketing Incentive Program and ARPA Meeting & Convention Incentive Program, both of which to be used for event incentives specifically targeted at attracting new meetings and competitive sporting events to spur economic activity and travel across the Commonwealth.
These funds are a part of the $50 million ARPA appropriation during the August 2021 Special General Assembly Session to assist in the revitalization of Virginia’s tourism industry to overcome the negative impact of COVID-19.
83 events will be awarded funds for expenses paid by the destination, government agency or venue to support the hosted meeting or event. These expenses range from site/venue rental usage fees to equipment rental and shuttling. The estimated direct economic impact of the awarded events is more than $53 million.
Eligible applicants included Destination Marketing Organizations (DMO/CVBs), meeting or sports venues, city or county local government agencies (i.e. parks & recreation department), and sports commissions.
“Sports events and meetings are vital to the tourism industry,” said Rita McClenny, President and CEO of Virginia Tourism Corporation. “This appropriation is an opportunity to assist statewide organizations with its continued recovery efforts and help drive increased visitation and revenue generation.”
As the Commonwealth continues to grapple with the impact of COVID-19, the pandemic’s effect on Virginia’s economy only further emphasizes that statewide economic revival cannot occur without the recovery of the travel industry, which the designated funds for sports and meetings will help support.
A list of the awarded recipients can be found here.
For more information on the ARPA Sports Marketing and Meeting & Convention Incentive Programs, visit vatc.org.