Explore Georgia, the tourism division within the Georgia Department of Economic Development (GDEcD), announced today that it has awarded $20,000 in tourism product development grants to four new and expanding projects across the state.
“Georgia is an incredibly beautiful state. From the mountains to the coast, and from small towns to metropolitan cities, Georgia has destinations and experiences to satisfy the needs of every traveler, and we’re eager to welcome visitors who are ready to get out and explore,” said Georgia Department of Economic Development Commissioner Pat Wilson. “Safely welcoming more tourists to Georgia will make a significant difference in our economic recovery from COVID-19. We’re grateful for the opportunity to provide our partners with this additional funding.”
Recipients and projects receiving tourism development grants include:
- Food Truck and RV Park, Claxton – A Food Truck Park will be developed in downtown Claxton. Existing greenspace with mature oak trees will have new benches and lighting added to create a pleasant outdoor dining experience. The venue will host a food truck festival and serve as a stop on the 25th annual Cruisin’ in the Countryside bike tour. The 2021 bike tour will be held on November 13. The space will also offer electrical and water hookups for short-term RV visitors, creating lodging downtown.
- “Love Where You Live” Hearts public art, Douglasville – The “Love Where You Live” heart public art project invites local artists to create designs on fiberglass heart sculptures placed around the community. The artists will install painted heart sculptures in high-traffic areas to create photo opportunities for visitors.
- South Georgia Food & Wine Festival, Jeff Davis County – South Georgia Food & Wine Festival grew from three smaller food truck events in Hazlehurst. The event will feature Georgia Grown foods, craft beer, wine, and music. The 2021 event will be held April 16-17.
- Alleyway Restoration, Toccoa – The Alleyway Restoration project will include restoration work in accordance with historic preservation standards to two alleyways in downtown Toccoa. The alleyways will have bistro lighting added to make the space an outdoor entertainment and event area.
“It’s as important as ever to create and grow tourism products to help aid the recovery of our tourism industry and the broader economy,” said Deputy Commissioner of Tourism Mark Jaronski. “We are grateful for the opportunity to help communities expand and boost their appeal as a destination for tourists, encourage spending in local businesses, create jobs, and restore economic activity.”
The grant’s 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.
About Explore Georgia
Explore Georgia, the tourism division of the Georgia Department of Economic Development is the state’s official destination marketing organization. Through its home office in Atlanta, nine visitor information centers, and a network of representatives across the globe, Explore Georgia inspires travel to and within the state. The division works to advance Georgia’s $68.96 billion tourism industry that supports more than 484,000 jobs. Learn more at ExploreGeorgia.org.
The Georgia Department of Economic Development (GDEcD) is the state’s sales and marketing arm, the lead agency for attracting new business investment, encouraging the expansion of existing industry and small businesses, locating new markets for Georgia products, attracting tourists to Georgia, and promoting the state as a destination for arts and location for film, music and digital entertainment projects, as well as planning and mobilizing state resources for economic development. Visit www.georgia.org for more information.