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Tourism Development Grant

Grants to Mississippi Organizations to Market
Events and Festivals that Will Attract Tourists

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Mississippi Development Authority (MDA) Visit Mississippi

Deadline Date:

05/11/18 3:00 PM Receipt


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Grants of up to $5,000 and grants ranging from $6,000 to $10,000 to Mississippi organizations endorsed by the local tourism authority or government to promote tourism. Funding is intended to support the development and expansion of events and festivals that are likely to become a major tourism draw within three years.

Events should promote Mississippi’s culture, history, and unique story. Events should promote overnight visitation. Preference will be given to events that create regional partnerships/collaborations and have not received MDA Visit Mississippi funds in the current fiscal year.

Priority consideration will be given to new events and festivals in the early stages of development, or that are expanding. Priority will be given to festivals or events held in a concentrated time period -series or multi-weekend of music, arts and/or heritage cultural events.

Primary use of grant funds is for advertising and marketing, 50% of funds granted must be used for advertising and marketing.

Eligible opportunities include:
- Media Placement and Production (Print, Online, Outdoor, Broadcast, and Radio)
- Video/CD-ROM/DVD production
- Public Relations/Media Communications
- Strategic Planning and Research
- Website development
- Signage
- Equipment purchases or rentals* (stages, trailer stages, flat beds, porta potty, lighting, venues, etc.)
- Musician fees
- Security
- Professional horse shows and professional sporting events

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 154942

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Estimated Size of Grant:

Category 1: up to $5,000.
Category 2: $6,000 to $10,000.

Term of Contract:

Events that occur from July 1, 2018 - June 30, 2019 are eligible.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Eligible applicants for the funding must have local financial support and provide a letter of support from the local tourism entity or unit of local government with the application. The letter of support must be from an entity other than the one applying.

Shows, sales and auctions are not eligible for funding.

Awarded funds are ineligible to be transferred from one organization to another.

Only one applicant organization per application.

Non-eligible costs include, but are not limited to:
- Agency commissions, consulting and other fees
- Office supplies
- Items for resale
- Lobbying
- Educational conferences, advocacy program, expos and membership dues
- Travel expenses, including accommodations and non-public relations or marketing related transportation (Travel to and from meetings will not be reimbursed)
- Operational costs such as employee salaries, rent, utilities, postage, logo design fees, event cleanup/trash removal, employee t-shirts or other Administrative costs
- Infrastructure
- Construction of facilities or modification/cosmetic enhancements
- Expenses incurred before the date of the award letter
- Pre and/or post parties, breakfast, brunch, lunch, snacks, dinner
- Alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages
- Food of any type
- Gifts for judges or contestants (Trophies, plaques, gift cards, cash prizes, medals, engraving, ribbons or any type of award)
- Exhibitor tents, booth space, or stalls
- Miscellaneous purchases (flowers, pumpkins, hay, firewood, fence post, candy, decorations, coolers etc.)
- Cost of mailing Tourism Development application and/or final report to MDA
- Youth sporting events
- Theatre productions (plays and/or musicals)
- Community events held in casinos

Pre-Application Information:

Organization must have a State of Mississippi vendor number. Registration is available here:

Application for grant must be received by 3:00 PM on Friday, May 11, 2018.

If MDA Visit Mississippi agrees to fund event, payment will be made after the event and upon full completion of the Project Clearance Report.

Application submission will be limited to 2 per organization. Only 1 Category per application. One application may be selected for Category 1) up to $5,000, another application can be selected in Category 2) $6,000 to $10,000, make selection on the application.

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Please send typed original application with signature to:
TDG Program
Attn. Leigh Portwood
MDA Visit Mississippi
P.O. Box 849
Jackson, MS 39205

Or applications may be emailed to

For questions, please contact:
Leigh Portwood

MDA Visit Mississippi physical address:

MDA Visit Mississippi
Tourism Development Grant
Woolfolk Building, 5th Floor
501 North West Street
Jackson, MS 39201

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Mississippi

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