Waynesboro, VA – The City of Waynesboro invests annually in tourism-oriented business endeavors, events and projects through their grant program, “Building Opportunities to Support Tourism (BOOST).” City businesses and organizations are invited to apply for up to $2,500 to support eligible activities such as fairs, festivals, and projects intended to entice visitation including associated marketing, design, and printing costs. Funds are limited to new and existing tourism-related endeavors taking place within the City of Waynesboro between July 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021.
“Tourism plays a vital role in Waynesboro’s local economy, and that has been highlighted by the negative impact that the COVID-19 situation has had on our community,” says Jennifer Callison, Tourism and Marketing Manager, “The hospitality industry has been hit especially hard, and we’re proud to be able to offer the BOOST Grant Program once again to provide some much-needed support to affected organizations.” Prior to COVID-19, tourism spending was at a record level in Virginia, seeing continued growth year after year. Tourism revenue reached $37,487,675 in Waynesboro in 2018 and supported 371 local jobs.1 The numbers for 2020 will likely tell a different story, but the Waynesboro Tourism Department hopes the BOOST Grants will serve as a recovery resource for local tourism businesses and kickstart the industry as the economy cautiously continues to re-open. Early research indicates that travel will be more localized for the remainder of 2020, and Waynesboro and the Shenandoah Valley are well-situated to welcome travelers, offering an abundance of outdoor activities and a lower population density than most urban areas.
Full details for the requirements of the grant are included in the application, which is available for download on the City’s Economic Development site (www.waynesborobusiness.com) under “Local Business Resources,” or by emailing Jennifer Callison (CallisonJL@ci.waynesboro.va.us). Completed applications are due by 5 pm on Monday, June 29th to the Tourism Office. A committee will review the applications and make determinations for grant awards by Thursday, July 9th.
1 2018 Figures, US Travel Association for domestic visitor spending, 2018 figures (latest available).