Arlington Convention and Visitors Service (ACVS) has received $10,000 from the Virginia Tourism Corporation’s (VTC) Recovery Marketing Leverage Program (RMLP), designed to help local and regional tourism entities attract more visitors by leveraging limited local marketing dollars through a local match of state grant funds.
More than $1.9 million in matching grant funds were awarded to 161 local tourism initiatives through this program. This funding cycle, local partners will provide more than $5.6 million in-kind value to match the VTC grants. The grants will ultimately impact 483 statewide tourism entities.
ACVS will use the grant funds toward a spring 2021 marketing campaign centered on people disconnecting from their daily routines and reconnecting during a getaway to Arlington. The VTC grants funds are designed to support marketing campaigns to encourage consumers to re-enter the marketplace and spur economic activity and travel across Virginia.
“This funding will be critical to our efforts to help Arlington’s hotels and small businesses recover as quickly as possible from the pandemic,” said Emily Cassell, ACVS director. “COVID-19 and the related shutdowns have been devastating for our hospitality community. While much of our business is rebooking for next summer and beyond, we need to do everything possible to accelerate guests returning to stay, shop and dine in our neighborhoods when it’s safe to do so. The grant will help us promote Arlington to travelers and share how our hospitality community is focused on providing healthy and safe experiences for our visitors.”
The COVID-19 pandemic has had a major impact on the tourism and hospitality industries in Virginia. As the Commonwealth slowly reopens for business, VTC offered these grant funds as a first step to re-entry into the marketplace to spur economic activity and future travel across the Commonwealth.
“Tourism is a crucial section of the Virginia economy and when we invest in this industry, we support local job creation and drive regional economic growth, which is desperately needed now due to the pandemic,” said Governor Ralph Northam. “These funds give localities and businesses access to critical marketing resources that will help bring more travelers to our Commonwealth, increase visitor spending, and grow demand for Virginia products.”
Tourism is one of the Commonwealth’s largest economic engines, with visitors to Arlington spending more than $3.6 billion in 2019, supporting more than 27,000 work opportunities and contributing $97.8 million in local and state tax revenue. The tourism and hospitality industries have also been among the hardest-hit by the pandemic, experiencing decreased revenue and job loss, along with the temporary closure of many tourism-related businesses.
About Arlington Convention and Visitors Service
A division within Arlington Economic Development, the Arlington Convention and Visitors Service (ACVS) is Arlington County’s official destination marketing organization. Funded primarily through a guest-paid, 1/4-cent tax on hotel rooms, ACVS promotes Arlington as the perfect combination of convenience, value and local flavor for travelers visiting the Washington, D.C., region. For more information on Arlington tourism, visit www.stayarlington.com.
About Virginia Tourism Corporation
Virginia Tourism Corporation is the state agency charged with marketing the Commonwealth as a premier travel and film destination. In 2019, visitors to Virginia spent $27 billion, which supported 237,000 work opportunities and contributed $1.8 billion in state and local taxes. To learn more, visit virginia.org.