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Celebrate Ontario 2020

Grants to Ontario Organizations for
Events that Attract Tourists

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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Ontario Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport

Conf. Date:


Deadline Date:

01/21/20 5:00 PM Eastern Standard Time


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Grants to Ontario organizations for events and festivals that attract tourists. Applicants are required to contact the funding source before applying. Funding is intended for improved programming for events and festivals that are open to the public and take place in Ontario.

Applications must demonstrate:

  • Programming improvements that increase tourist visits and spending
  • A strategy to grow the event’s tourism attendance and an evidence-based rationale for the proposed programming improvements
  • Strong community and regional economic development focus
  • Confirmed tourism, business and community partnerships that encourage increased spending and overnight stays in the host community
  • Strong organizational and leadership capacity with proven ability to deliver the project
  • Contributions to rural, northern, non-peak season, Francophone and Indigenous event development.

Eligible Events:

  • Occur in the province of Ontario
  • Occur between April 1, 2020 and March 31, 2021
  • Are open to the public at large, without membership in a club or group
  • Are held annually or biennially

Note: Canada Day events are eligible if they feature at least 3 hours of multicultural programming.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 163279

Estimated Size of Grant:

The funding request cannot exceed $250,000.

Term of Contract:

Events must occur between April 1, 2020 and March 31, 2021.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Eligible applicant organizations
- Must be Ontario-based with legal status for one year or longer, as of January 1, 2020 (e.g., those that are established by or under legislation; are federally or provincially incorporated; are band councils established under the Indian Act; or are other Indigenous organizations that are incorporated).
- Must not be in default of the terms and conditions of any grant or loan agreement with any ministry or agency of the Government of Ontario.

Ineligible Applicant Organizations
- Federal or provincial governments and/or their agencies
- Non-incorporated entities (e.g., sole proprietorships)

Ineligible Events
- Events of a primarily commercial nature, where the main intent of the event is to sell or promote one or multiple products, services or sponsorships (e.g., trade fairs and shows, business events, consumer shows, artisan and craft fairs)
- Fundraising events or events with a primarily charitable purpose
- Symposia, conventions, meetings, conferences, seminars, clinics, workshops and award shows
- Events that attract only a special-interest audience or recruit new members (e.g., religious or political gatherings and workshops)
- Sporting events offering programming that is of primary benefit to the event participants only, and are not marketed to or do not attract additional tourists
- One-time-only events

Note: Applications requesting marketing funding only are ineligible.

Pre-proposal Conference:

To help with the application process, online information sessions are being offered via webinar and teleconference.

French: Wednesday, December 11, 2019
10:30 AM to 12:00 PM (EST)
To register:

English: Wednesday, December 11, 2019
2:00 PM to 3:30 PM (EST)
To register:

English: Thursday, December 12, 2019
10:30 AM to 12:00 PM (EST)
To register:

English: Tuesday, December 17, 2019
2:00 PM to 3:30 PM (EST)
To register:

English: Wednesday, December 18, 2019
10:30 AM to 12:00 PM (EST)
To register:

French: Wednesday, December 18, 2019
2:00 PM to 3:30 PM (EST)
To register:

Pre-Application Information:

The deadline to apply for Celebrate Ontario is Tuesday, January 21st, 2020 at 5:00 PM (Eastern Standard Time). Program announcements will be made in Spring 2020.

Applicants with cash operating expenses of less than $1 million are encouraged to consult with their Tourism Advisor prior to submitting an application.

Applicants with cash operating expenses of $1 million or more can contact Luanne Smith

The Ministry of Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Culture Industries (the ministry) will consider only one application
per event through the Celebrate Ontario 2020 program.

The ministry will consider a maximum of two applications for two separate events per organization through the
Celebrate Ontario 2020 program.

How to Apply:
Tourism Advisors:

Contact Information:

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

Apply online:

Luanne Smith
416 219-3950

For service in French, contact:
Safaa Zbib
647 823-7863

For technical support, contact:

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

Canada: Ontario;

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