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Submitted by the City of Bellingham, written by Shannon Taysi

The City of Bellingham is accepting applications for tourism grants to promote eligible tourism and cultural activities within the City. Eligibility is broadly defined to encourage wide participation and innovative proposals.

Applications will be accepted until Noon, Friday August 19, 2022. The grants are awarded through a competitive process. More information and applications available on the City’s website at www.cob.org/tourismgrants.

This year the City is offering a start-up grant opportunity for events, programs or projects that are under three years old, in addition to traditional grant awards.

“Our grants play an important role in bringing people to Bellingham and Whatcom County. We are excited to see Bellingham’s tourism industry coming back to life after COVID-19 impacted events and activities from 2020 well into this year,” Tara Sundin, the City’s Community and Economic Development Manager, said.

Sundin said an estimated $300,000 in grants will be distributed in 2023 through this program. Past tourism promotion grants have funded the Bellingham Bay Marathon, Wild Buffalo, Bellingham Festival of Music, Bellingham Bells, the Ski to Sea Race, and many other events and activities.

The purpose of this grant program is to promote various programs and events that bring visitors to Bellingham and Whatcom County, resulting in increased hotel stays and economic activity, Sundin said. Eligibility is broadly defined to encourage wide participation and innovative proposals. The grant program is primarily focused on marketing activities, but a portion of the grant can be directed to support operations as well.

Special consideration will be given to events that occur during the off-season (between October and May) and/or by partnering with other agencies or events to reduce duplication of activities. Complete program eligibility requirements are included on the City’s website. Questions regarding this grant program should be directed to Shannon Taysi, Planning & Community Development, at staysi@cob.org or 778-8360.

Featured photo by Kenni Merritt

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