The Cortland County Convention & Visitors Bureau (CCCVB) was selected as one of 30 tourism partners across New York State to receive funding through the Economic Development Administration (EDA) Tourism Partner Sub-Awards Grant Program.
The CCCVB has been awarded $250,000 to advocate for and actively impact the youth, amateur and recreational sporting market in Cortland County through the development of a targeted sports marketing campaign under the Experience Cortland umbrella.
“We are very grateful for the Empire State Development Administration's support,” said Michelle Enright, Executive Director of the CCCVB. “This funding is an ideal fit for the county as it has been the focus of millions of dollars of recent investment in sports tourism, millions more in ongoing development, and it has inherent strengths and opportunities necessary to grow this market.”
The federal COVID-19 recovery funding, made available through the United States Economic Development Administration, was awarded to New York State to support the post-pandemic shutdown recovery of the State’s travel, tourism and outdoor recreation sectors. Empire State Development’s Division of Tourism sub-awarded the funding to Destination Marketing Organizations throughout the state for tourism marketing projects based on the Division’s EDA grant focus areas: outdoor recreation, international tourism and travel trade, including Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions, amateur sports and group travel.
As an emerging and more central economic sector in Cortland County, sports tourism is making an increasingly robust contribution to the local economy. The strength of the Cortland Regional Sports Council (CRSC), the development of The Lumber Yard, SUNY Cortland's leadership as a top sports and recreation college, an abundance of year-round man-made and natural venues, combined with an increase in niche sporting options have helped to position Cortland County more aggressively in the sports tourism marketplace - especially given its central location in New York State.
Combine the above assets that sell Cortland County as a sports tourism destination with its cultural attractions, diverse culinary scene, retail and festivals, and the CCCVB can aid in casting a wider net when promoting the county to incoming athletes and spectators.
“The Regional Sports Council and local sports bodies do a phenomenal job attracting athletes and events like the Empire State Senior Games, PBRT tournaments and the Ditch Banger Cross Country Race,” added Enright. “It is imperative that the CVB collaborate with these organizations to effectively promote offerings beyond the field to families, spouses and spectators. We want them to experience our incredible restaurants, entertainment venues and historical assets, and hopefully, encourage repeat visitation.”
Specific objectives of the funding include but are not limited to, building an asset library of facilities, events and recreational opportunities, expanding the Experience Cortland platform to include sport and recreational information, updating the Experience Cortland app, actively promoting activities for leisure travelers and establishing measurement tools to assess the effectiveness of the sports tourism strategy.
“Sports tourism helps create exposure and enhances a positive image for the local community, and we’re excited for the opportunity to continue to build our already impressive sporting infrastructure.”
More information, including a full list of awardees, is available here.
The Cortland County Convention & Visitors Bureau’s purpose is to enhance the general economy of Cortland County, its cities, towns and villages, through promotion of tourist activities, conventions, trade shows, special events and other directly related and supporting activities.
The CVB office is located at 42 Main Street, Cortland, NY. For more information on the Cortland County Convention & Visitors Bureau, please call 607-753-8463, email firstname.lastname@example.org, visit us on the web at www.experiencecortland.com, or follow us on our social media channels @experiencecortland.
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