The Spencer County Visitors Bureau Inc. seeks new applicants for $12,754 in grant funds available through the Tourism Enhancement Grant. Since announcing the $50,000 grant earlier this year, the Visitors Bureau has distributed $37,246 to eight local businesses and organizations.
The 2022 Tourism Enhancement Grant was established to help strengthen Spencer County tourism and increase its economic impact in 2022-2023. The grant assists tourism-related entities in funding special projects, events, activities, marketing, and other initiatives that encourage visitation throughout Spencer County.
Recent recipients were awarded a total of $9,250 for the following initiatives:
- Santa Claus Museum & Village expanded its parking lot to accommodate more guests during peak times and special events.
- Spencer County Fair will add a motocross facility and event to this year’s schedule. The new event is expected to attract additional visitation and increase weekday traffic to Spencer County.
- The second annual Octoberfest, hosted by the St. Francis of Assisi Parish, requested grant funds to increase marketing and attract more visitation. This special event offers food booths, live music, kids’ activities, a half-pot drawing, and more.
Other businesses and organizations awarded tourism enhancement funds earlier this year include Beloved Farms, Ohio River Scenic Railway, Lincoln Pines Lakefront Resort, St. Meinrad Rocks, and Lincoln Pioneer Village & Museum.
“This tourism enhancement grant has sparked a lot of grant ideas and conversations throughout the county,” says Spencer County Visitors Bureau Executive Director Melissa Arnold. “As our local tourism industry continues to grow, the Visitors Bureau is happy to support new initiatives that will further enhance our destination.”
More than $12,000 remains in the tourism enhancement grant fund. For complete details and a submission form, interested entities can visit SantaClausInd.org/tourism-partners and IndianasAbeLincoln.org/tourism-partners. Contact the Spencer County Visitors Bureau at (812) 937-4199 with any questions or to brainstorm ideas.
The Spencer County Convention Recreation and Visitors Commission members are appointed by the Spencer County Commissioners, Spencer County Council, and the county’s largest municipality. The same members make up the board for the Spencer County Visitors Bureau Inc.
2022 board members are Ashley Blankenbaker (president) of Holiday World & Splashin’ Safari, Faye Hedinger (vice president) of Monkey Hollow Winery and Distillery, Cheyenne Knox (secretary) of Lincoln State Park, Natalie Koch (treasurer) of Santa Claus Museum & Village, Nancy Kaiser of Lincoln Pioneer Village & Museum, Kayla Morris of Pepper’s Ridge Winery, and Karin Gries of Lincoln Pines Lakefront Resort.
The Spencer County Visitors Bureau encourages guests to stay overnight and provides a variety of resources about local attractions, shops, and restaurants.