Province accepting applications through new event recovery fund

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The B.C. government has begun accepting applications to support B.C.-based events through its new Fairs, Festivals and Events Recovery Fund.

The province said it will provide up to $12.9 million in one-time grants to eligible event organizers to support efforts to resume safely. Grant amounts for each will be up to 20 per cent of the total event budget, to a maximum of $250,000 per application, according to a media release from the province.

“We know that people have been missing community fairs, festivals and events, and organizers have made tremendous sacrifices to keep us all safe,” said Melanie Mark, minister of tourism, arts, culture and sport. “We’re proud to support local events, so people can gather safely with family and friends, in groups and close to home as we continue to navigate our way through this pandemic.”

Eligible events include sport, arts and culture events, community celebrations, agricultural fairs, rodeos and exhibitions, according to the release. Applications submitted by organizations will be required to demonstrate local or regional support and show the economic and social benefits for the community. Eligible expenses include operational costs, health and safety measures, venue rental, marketing, wages and promotion.

“We thank the province for its continued recognition of the significant challenges our sector is facing through ongoing financial support,” said Shelley Frost, CEO of the Pacific National Exhibition in Vancouver. “For communities large and small across this province, the local fair is a part of the social fabric. It’s a place to come together and celebrate, and this assistance will help ensure it continues on an ongoing basis.”

Applications will be accepted until Oct. 1, for eligible events taking place between July 1, 2021 and Sept. 30, 2022.

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