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York County Tourism Grant Program

 

The York County Convention & Visitors Bureau and the York County Commissioners have established a matching grant program aimed at boosting tourism (visitation from beyond a 50-mile radius) in York County. The program, which is funded through a room tax enacted by the York County Commissioners, will provide financial support to initiatives deemed capable of generating broad and substantial benefit to York County tourism. The York County Tourism Grant Committee will be accepting proposals for projects aimed at expanding and/or improving tourism promotion and development in York County.

Instructions for completing the PDF form:
  • Open the application and download it to your computer.
  • Save the file to your computer.
  • Enter your information and save periodically.
  • When you have completed your application you can attach the document and email. 

Timeline:

Grant cycle opens: December 1, 2016
Grant applications for round one due: February 15, 2017
Minimum amount for round 1: $2,500
Recipients of Round 1 grants announced: June 1, 2017
Post grant reports due: 90 days after completion of program

APPLICATION: Round 1, Minimum Grant Amount $2,500 CLOSED


Grant applications for round two due: August 1, 2017
Grant applications will not be accepted prior to: July 10, 2017
Maximum amount for round 2: $10,000
Recipients of Round 2 grants announced: October 12, 2017
Post grant reports due: 30 days after completion of program

APPLICATION: Round 2, Maximum Grant Amount $10,000

General Information & Guidelines:

The committee seeks proposals that collectively represent a broad range of approaches to grow tourism and enhance the visitor experience in York County. It will be looking for proposals that reflect creativity and innovation, an understanding of the tourism industry and current trends, and that present a clear and convincing case for how the proposed initiative will expand tourism or broadly enhance the visitor experience. It is especially interested in proposals that describe a compelling case for maximizing the economic impact of tourism in York County by increasing overnight stays.

Some areas of interest to the committee include:

  • Strengthening the competitiveness of existing attractions or events.
  • Building upon existing attractions or events to attract new visitors or drive increased tourist spending.
  • Developing new attractions or events with potential for substantial impact through increased overnight stays.
  • Broadly enhancing the visitor experience.
  • Promotional efforts to attract overflow visitors from regional events.

The committee is particularly interested in proposals that will leverage grant dollars by:

  • Attracting additional funding sources.
  • Bringing together collaborators or partners to align strategies, leverage consistent messaging and amplify impact.
  • Increasing organizational capacity to drive greater impact.
  • Advancing a high potential project or event to the next level or phase.
  • Successful applicants will be able to articulate/provide most of the following:
  • A clear vision of the impact their project will have on tourism in York County. 
  • A realistic sense of what it will take to execute their project successfully.
  • Reliable data or evidence to support the proposed approach.
  • Relevant consumer/visitor input or feedback.
  • A strategic plan that describes the organization's direction and key goals.
  • Internally generated reports that reflect a financially stable organization without significant operating deficits or an unsustainable level of debt.
  • Evidence of experience and success with project design, management and execution.

Grant applications and grants may be for multi-year projects and pay-outs. Requirements and Restrictions.

  • All grantees will be required to make a cash or in-kind match of at least 25%.*
  • There is no set number of grant awards to be made in any fiscal year. For grant applications due on February 15, 2017, the minimum award amount to an individual grantee will be $2,500.
  • Signage that promotes a specific private entity on the situs of that entity is not a permitted use of grant funds, except where the signage also carries the logo of the York County Convention & Visitors Bureau. *
  • This grant program is not intended to be a sustaining operating funding source for the applicant or the proposed project. 
  • Tourism or travel marketing or promotion program, expenditure or project must not compete with private-sector tourism or travel efforts.*
  • Any marketing, electronic or printed, must include the YCCVB website www.yorkpa.org Recipients of grants must provide a link on their website to www.yorkpa.org and make available copies of the Official York County Travel Guide at their place of business.
  • The grant program is intended to market or help position York County as a sports, leisure, business, convention or meeting travel destination.

* ACT 18 legal requirements

For more information, contact Denise Restuccia, York County Convention & Visitors Bureau, denise@yorkpa.org or 717-852-9675, Ext. 113.

Eric Menzer, Chair of the York County Tourism Grant Committee, appeared on Comcast Newsmakers to discuss the grant program: