Commerce awards $3.3 million to community festivals and events; over $125,000 in local funding
The Washington State Department of Commerce, in collaboration with the Washington Festivals and Events Association (WFEA) and ArtsWA, announced 284 successful applicants in 36 of the state’s 39 counties to receive more than $3.3 million in pandemic relief and recovery grants.
These funds are intended to provide support to “legacy-level” events that have taken place for five or more years, festivals, civic and holiday celebrations, cultural and heritage events, music festivals, and street and arts fairs in communities with populations of 100,000 or less.
Grants can be used to restart local festivals and events suspended in 2020 and 2021 due to the pandemic or to stabilize depleted budgets.
Locally this brought over $53,000 to Grays Harbor events and organizations, and nearly $100,000 in Pacific County.
Included in the allocation were funds for Loggers’ Playday, Rusty Scuppers Pirate Days, the Willapa Harbor Festival, and a number of other groups.
Grants ranged from $178 to $35,000 and were based on need and demonstrated losses.
The program was made possible through a tourism relief grant from the U.S. Economic Development Administration.
Recipients can use the funds for deposits on infrastructure (security, temporary fencing, staging, lights, sound equipment, etc.) and staff and labor costs.
According to Commerce, the goals of the program are to “increase business revenues in affected communities, preserve the vibrancy, diversity and growth of events that celebrate the area’s arts, history and culture and provide opportunities for entertainers, artisans and craftspeople who depend on these events” for their income.
“Festivals and events are important to a community’s sense of place. They bring residents together and visitors from out of town,” said Commerce Director Lisa Brown. “Many of these celebrations also support other causes, from local food banks to college scholarship programs. They are an essential part of Commerce’s mission of strengthening communities and growing Washington’s economy.”
|City of Montesano||Grays Harbor County||$ 5,000|
|Cranberry Heritage||Grays Harbor County||$ 197|
|Grays Harbor Historical Seaport||Grays Harbor County||$ 10,000|
|Half Moon Bay Pirates||Grays Harbor County||$ 7,000|
|Hoquiam Loggers Play Day||Grays Harbor County||$ 11,000|
|Master Gardener Foundation of Grays Harbor and Pacific Counties||Grays Harbor County||$ 9,000|
|Westport/Grayland Chamber of Commerce||Grays Harbor County||$ 11,000|
|Grays Harbor Total||$ 53,197|
|Finnish American Folk Festival||Pacific County||$ 7,000|
|Friends of Chinook School||Pacific County||$ 11,000|
|Friends of Willapa National Wildlife Refuge||Pacific County||$ 9,000|
|Ilwaco Heritage Foundation dba Columbia Pacific Heritage Museum||Pacific County||$ 5,000|
|Ilwaco Merchants Association||Pacific County||$ 5,000|
|Long Beach Merchants Association||Pacific County||$ 9,000|
|Pacific County Fair||Pacific County||$ 15,000|
|The World Kite Museum & Hall of Fame||Pacific County||$ 17,500|
|Tokeland Hotel & Restaurant||Pacific County||$ 15,000|
|Willapa Harbor Festival||Pacific County||$ 3,424|
|Pacific County Total||$ 96,924|