Wednesday, June 20 , 2018, 9:30 pm | Fair 63º



Santa Maria Visitor Bureau Awards Tourism Grants

The Santa Maria Valley Chamber of Commerce and Visitor Bureau has announced the recipients for the first of two grant cycles happening in 2018. Nearly $22,000 was awarded to nine local nonprofit organizations that submitted applications.

“Our Special Projects Grant sponsorship program is funded by the Visitor Bureau in order to support events, projects and attractions that strengthen our economy and generate overnight stays in local hotels,” said Jennifer Harrison, bureau director.

Recipients for the first cycle of grants in 2018 are:
Kiwanis of Santa Maria, in support of the Santa Maria Beerfest
HCE Productions, in support of the 805 Country Music Festival & Agricultural Showcase
Santa Maria Taekwondo Academy, in support of the 2018 Santa Maria Open Taekwondo Championship
Santa Maria Bent Axles Street Rods, Inc., in support of its Bent Axles Car Show, Cruise and Barbecue held in July
Pickups Limited, in support of its F-100 North-South Run auto show held in August 2018
Pacific Conservatory Theatre, in support of its year-round community performances
Elks Rodeo Parade
Foxen Canyon Wine Trail, in support of the Christmas on the Trail passport event
West Coast Kustoms, in support of the Cruisin’ Nat’l Kustom Car Show and the 2018 Santa Maria City Cruise
“The success of these events truly builds on our area’s recognition and economic well-being. We are pleased to offer our support and collaborate on getting the word out,” Harrison said.

“We strategically support a diverse range of events in order to tap different markets and groups. This includes reaching out to meeting planners and sporting event hosts to grow the number of gatherings in the Santa Maria Valley,” she said.

The grant program allows organizations planning events to apply for marketing assistance to reach target visitor markets, Harrison said.

Key travel and tour markets for the Santa Maria Valley include the San Francisco Bay Area; Los Angeles; Bakersfield and Kern County; Nevada; and Washington state.

— Malei J. Weir for Santa Maria Valley Chamber of Commerce and Visitor & Convention Bureau.


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