Funds Help Promote Events
TOMS RIVER – With summer just a few short months away, Ocean County tourism officials want to make sure plenty of people know about the events taking place this year and visit the County.
"This has been a very long and cold winter," said Ocean County Freeholder Director Joseph H. Vicari, who serves as liaison to the Ocean County Tourism Advisory Council. "Everyone is ready to get out in the sunshine and fresh air and we want to make sure visitors and residents alike know about the great activities available to them here in Ocean County."
Under the 2014 Ocean County Tourism Promotional Matching Grant program, 57 grants totaling $62,866 were awarded to municipalities and non-profits to help them promote events. The Ocean County Board of Chosen Freeholders approved the grants at its March 19 meeting.
"Investing in the tourism industry is a sound investment in Ocean County's economy," Vicari said. "Every tourism dollar spent in Ocean County circulates seven times. Tourism is a $4.3 billion industry in Ocean County and annually results in more than 70,000 jobs.
"This board's continued support of the tourism industry shows our commitment to stimulating the local economy in order to help businesses and also those residents seeking jobs," Vicari said. "Once they are here, tourists and our residents patronize local restaurants and businesses, helping our economy while enjoying the programs and events that are offered.
"This is a key industry in Ocean County and it plays an important role in all of our communities," Vicari said. "We have gone through some difficult times following Superstorm Sandy and we need visitors to help the recovery along and to allow businesses to prosper again."
Organizations can only apply for one grant and awards are competitive based on a point system, which is included in the grant application.
Determination is made by a committee of volunteers from the Ocean County Tourism Advisory Council which looks at a number of areas in the grant application including whether the event would attract visitors to the area and create a positive ambiance, the past performances of an organization, if the event will attract visitors off-season, midweek and encourage overnight stays, the quality of the event, and additional points for new or expanded aspects that could result in growing an event.
"The grant program is now in its 26th year," Vicari said. "I want to commend our Tourism Advisory Council for its dedication and diligence in making this so successful."
The following is the list of grant recipients, the event and the amount received:
Alliance for a Living Ocean, Alliance for a Living Ocean, $1,000; Ancient Order of the Hibernians, Ship Bottom Irish Festival, $800; Barnegat Bay Decoy/Tuckerton Seaport, 2014 Chriskindlmarkt, $1,750; Barnegat Bay Foundation, Barnegat Bay Festival, $800; Barnegat Township, Barnegat Pirates Day, $1,200; Bay Head Business Assoc., 2014 Publication Project, $800; Beach Haven Borough, 2014 Tourism Guide, $800; Beach Haven Charter Fishing Assoc., BHCFA Tourism Project, $1,750; Beach Haven Community Arts, Concerts on the Green, $700; Beachwood Recreation Comm., 5K River Run & 1 Mile Fun Run, $800; Berkeley Twp. Recreation Dept., Community Pride Day, $700; Borough of Pine Beach, Pine Beach 5K & Riverside Run, $800; Borough of Ship Bottom, Celebration of Public Events, $800; Eagleswood Township, Eagleswood Country Fair, $500; Friends of Island Beach State Park, 2014 Visitors Guide, $1,500; Garden State Philharmonic, GSP Marketing Initiative, $1,750.
And, Harvey Cedars Activity Committee, 2014 Summer Events, $800; Jersey Shore Boy Scouts Council, Camporees & Events, $1,000; John F. Peto Studio Museum, Promotion of Peto Museum, $1,500; Joseph P. Hayes Theatre, Inc., 65th Anniversary Season, $1,500; Lacey Township Municipal Alliance, Lacey 5K & One Mile Fun Run, $800; Lakewood Lions Club, Renaissance Festival, $1,750; LBI Foundation of Arts & Sciences, Paint Your Sole/Run-Color-Fun, $800; Lighthouse International Film Fest, International Film Festival, $1,500; Long Beach Island Historical Assoc., Brochures & Advertising, $800; Long Beach Township Beach Patrol, Lifeguard In Training, $800; Navy Lakehurst Historical Society, 2014 Tourism Promotion, $1,500.
Also, NJ Maritime Museum, Tribute to Commercial Fishing, $1,000; Ocean County Artists Guild, 2014 Tourism Events, $1,400; Ocean County Board of Agriculture, Ocean County Fair, $1,500; Ocean County Chapter SPEBSQSA Inc., "This Is Why We Sing," $1,200; Ocean County College, Arts Marketing Project, $1,400; Ocean County Library, Ocean County Library Film Fest, $800; Ocean Professional Theatre Company, 2014 Season Promotion, $1,000; Ocean Running Club, Seaside Half Marathon, $700; Our Gang Players, Summer Musical, $750; Pine Shores Art Association, Art Education of the Community, $800;
Plumsted Township Main Street Program, Community and Visitors Guide, $800; Point Pleasant Beach Chamber of Commerce, Seafood Festival, $1,500; Point Pleasant Elks, Annual Fluke Tournament, $1,500; ReClam the Bay, Clam Trail Map, $1,500; Rotary Club of Toms River, 2014 SailFest, $1,400; Seaside Heights B.I. D., 2014 Visitors Guide, $1,500; Seaside Heights Tourist Dev. Comm., Internet Marketing Campaign, $1,750.
Also, Southern Ocean County Chamber of Commerce,
Annual ChowderFest, $1,750; St. Francis Community Center, LBI Commemorative 18 Mile Run, $1,250; St. Mary's Church, Nights of Summer Carnival, $800; Stafford Township Recreation, Fall Harvest, $1,000; Summer In The Park, Calendar of Events, $1,000; Toms River Business Dev. Corp., Downtown Toms River Rack Card, $1,000; Toms River Fire Co. # 1, Toms River Halloween Parade, $1,000; Toms River Seaport Society, Wooden Boat Festival, $500; Township of Brick, 2014 Brick SummerFest, $1,500; Township of Ocean, Founders Day, $1,000; US Coast Guard Auxiliary Flotilla 16-07, Boaters Guide, $766; VFW Post 4715-Mens Auxiliary, VFW Family Flukin Frenzy, $700;
Vintage Auto Museum, Derby Race, $900.