Georgia Tourism, a division of the Georgia Department of Economic Development(GDEcD), announced that it has awarded more than $64,000 in tourism product development grants to 14 new and expanding projects across the state.
“New tourism product is what drives visitation to Georgia and the resource team grants help to get these projects off the ground,” said Kevin Langston, deputy commissioner for tourism at the Georgia Department of Economic Development. “We are thrilled to announce this new round of funding because these projects will create lasting economic growth for these communities by helping spur job creation, attract investment and provide residents with an improved quality of life.”
In an effort to support and encourage Georgia’s tourism entities to create new tourism product, Georgia Tourism offers this grant to communities who participated in the department’s Tourism Product Development Resource Team program. The Tourism Product Development Resource Team program works to evaluate a community’s potential for tourism growth and development through innovative and unique experiences based on a community’s local culture and heritage.
“We are thrilled with this year’s tourism product development grant awardees,” said Cindy Eidson, director of Tourism Product Development with the Georgia Department of Economic Development. “Funding is the greatest need for these projects and with this program we are able to assist these communities with implementing new product that will drive visitors to their communities and create a sustainable tourism industry.”
The Tourism Product Development Resource Team Community Funding Program allows the communities served to build new product from the recommendations made by the Tourism Product Development Resource Team members or supports projects the community has developed as an expansion of the resource team’s recommendations. The recommendations and financial support provided through this funding program is designed to spur tourism development activities at the local level that maintain and create jobs, attract tourists, and enhance the visitor experience.
Recipients of the 2019 Tourism Product Development Funding Program include:
- The Hiram Rosenwald School Restoration Project – City of Hiram
- Gilbert-Stephenson Park Mural Wall – City of Fort Oglethorpe
- Needwood Baptist Church and School Preservation – City of Brunswick
- Downtown Dublin Park Here. Walk anywhere. – Dublin Downtown Development Authority
- Swamp Fox Distilling Company – Marion County
- The Wadsworth Alley Tourism Project – Newnan Main Street Downtown Development Authority
- Green Front Café Revitalization Project – Phase I – City of Stockbridge
- Citizens Cemetery – City of Ringgold
- African-American Museum Paint Project – City of Thomaston
- Oconee County Welcome Center Refresh
- Explore Okefenokee Marketing Plan Development – Charlton County
- Plains Camellia Trail/Revitalization of Maxine Reed Park – City of Plains
- Tugaloo Bend Heritage Park – Outdoor Kitchen – City of Toccoa
- Marketing Seminole County & Donalsonville GA Post Hurricane Michael
The Georgia Tourism review panel consists of members from the public and private sector as well as fellow professionals who are experienced in the tourism industry or the type of grant being reviewed.