KANKAKEE COUNTY, IL – The Kankakee County Convention & Visitors Bureau has announced that it will invest $647,500 in tourism-related projects as part of the Community Tourism Action Plan (CTAP) Grant Awards.
The funding will be used to enhance the tourism industry in Kankakee County and generate new economic impact through visitation by non-residents.
The CTAP grants are designed to expand the tourism product in Kankakee County and attract new visitors while extending the length of stay of current visitors. The grants will provide co-op marketing assistance to support new signature events that will generate overnight visitation to Kankakee County and measurable hotel room nights.
The Kankakee County Convention & Visitors Bureau Board of Directors received a robust response from 23 project applications in Kankakee County. The board reviewed all applications, met with an independent consultant from MMGY Next Factor, who provided funding recommendations, and ultimately awarded funding to 10 organizations and projects.
Recipients receiving up to $24,999 in grant funding were required to secure a 25% match, while recipients awarded $25,000 or more were required to ensure a 50% match.
The Kankakee Riverfront Society was the largest recipient of the grant, receiving $500,000 in funding. Other recipients include the Locavore Farm ($50,000), the Village of Bourbonnais ($50,000), Adventure Christian Church / Adventure Commons ($15.000), the Bourbonnais Township Park District ($10,000), the Community Arts Council of Kankakee County & Kankakee County Historical Society ($5,000), Connect Roasters ($5,000), Deer Ridge Barn ($5,000), Knack Brewing & Fermentations ($5,000), and Collaborative Initiative to Revive Kankakee Arts (CIRKA) ($2,500).
The Kankakee County Convention & Visitors Bureau Board of Directors is proud to continue investing in Kankakee County tourism efforts and expand on the good work that has been done to drive visitation. The organization believes that these grants will help stimulate more progress and growth in the tourism industry, which generated $5.6 million in direct local tax revenue in 2021. The board expects to invest up to $1 million in funding this year and dedicate as much as 25% of its annual budget toward grants.
A second cycle of this grant will begin on August 1, 2023, with an application deadline of September 15, 2023, and applicant notification by September 29, 2023. The Kankakee County Convention & Visitors Bureau Board of Directors hopes to continue investing in the tourism industry and expand the economic benefits for Kankakee County and its municipalities.