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Volume 26, Number 5 — May 2019

Marion receives $10,000 grant from the Virginia Tourism

KEN HEATH: "These funds will help us get the word out so everyone in the region can come and celebrate here in America's Coolest Hometown all summer long."

March 11, 2019

MARION, VA — The Town of Marion's Office of Community and Economic Development announced that it has received a $10,000 grant from the Virginia Tourism Corporation “50 Years of Love” grant fund. “50 Years of Love” is part of VTC’s efforts to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Virginia is for Lovers tourism slogan, which was created in 1969 by Richmond-based advertising agency Martin & Woltz.

The Office of Community and Economic Development of the Town of Marion partnered with local eateries and businesses to celebrate with their annual "Summer Concert Series," which features seven free community block parties at their "Fourth Fridays Broad Street Cruise Ins" April through October, live music for "Red Rockin' Blues Independence Day" and the award-winning "Marion Downtown Chili Championship Concert Series" July 19 and 20.

The Fourth Friday concerts include Mark Larkins, April 26: Ed Young Band, May 24; My Girl, My Whiskey and Me, June 28; Beach Nite Band, July 26; Blue Moon featuring Arnold Davidson, Aug. 23; Cabin Creek, Sept. 27; and Tennessee Champagne, Oct. 25. From The Edge performs at Rec Rockin’ Blues Independence Day. Phantom performs at the chili championship July 19. July 20 the concert line-up includes Morrison and Perkins, Acoustifried, Herbie Russ, Jigsaw Jane, Chase Payne, Chris Hennessee and Folk Soul Revival.

“Virginia is for Lovers is one of the most iconic tourism slogans in the world, and we are thrilled to be celebrating “50 years of Love” with partners from around the Commonwealth in 2019,” said Rita McClenny, president and CEO of Virginia Tourism Corporation. “This grant program provides an engaging opportunity for destinations across the state to showcase what makes a vacation in Virginia so special, and helps to show travelers why Virginia is for Lovers still rings true 50 years later.”

"We are so excited to join the communities across Virginia to celebrate," said Ken Heath, Marion's director of community and economic development. "These funds will help us get the word out so everyone in the region can come and celebrate here in America's Coolest Hometown all summer long."

In total, VTC awarded $390,000 to 39 tourism marketing programs across the Commonwealth to help increase visitation and revenue. Each grant recipient received a $10,000 grant for its “50 Years of Love” project, with the requirement of engaging 10 or more tourism partners in order to receive grant funding.

The Virginia Tourism Corporation is the state agency responsible for marketing Virginia to visitors and promoting the“Virginia is for Lovers”brand, which is celebrating 50 years in 2019. Tourism is an instant revenue generator in Virginia. In 2017, visitors spent $25 billion, which supported 232,000 jobs and contributed $1.73 billion in state and local taxes