PURPOSE

The purpose of the Tourism Business Improvement Districts (TBID) Grant Fund is to provide funding to new and/or growing events that will provide economic benefit through increased hotel room nights and other spending within the Missoula community.

GOALS

  • To fund events that generate NEW hotel room nights, preferably in non-peak months (October-April).
  • To fund events that reach potential visitors outside of Missoula, preferably 100+ miles.
  • To fund events that have potential to increase the number of visitors or to extend the visitors stay.
  • To fund events that economically benefit the Missoula community.

FUNDING SOURCE

These funds are made available through the support of the TBID lodging partners. For every occupied room night, guests are assessed $2.00 that is returned to Missoula to aid in tourism, promotion and marketing within the district.

NUMBER OF GRANT AWARDS

There is no set number of grants that may be awarded in any fiscal year. However, the total dollar amount of grant funds awarded may not exceed the total amount of funds allotted each year by the TBID board. To date the TBID has awarded grant funds as small as $1,500.00 and as large as $15,000.00 per event.

FUTURE FUNDING

Funds should be viewed as money to assist with events in the formative years and should not be viewed as a guaranteed continuous source of funding. Applicants will not be guaranteed funding after the first year of the award and will need to reapply in subsequent years.

ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS 

Any organization or individual presenting an event that supports the TBID Grant purpose and goals is eligible to apply for funding. Applying organizations or individuals must be prepared to meet the following criteria:

  • Provide proof of dollar for dollar match for the requested grant funds.
  • Proven ability to generate, track and report hotel room nights and economic impact of the event. A minimum of 100 NEW room nights is required for all event.
  • If 75% of the committed new hotel room nights listed on the application are not realized, 50% of potential grant funds will not be awarded.
  • Marketing plan, budget form (use the TBID downloadable template on the grant application page) and event planning timeline must be provided with application submission.
  • Existing events must submit event history (up to 3 years), including number of hotel rooms booked, attendance and financial reports.
  • Communication with hotels regarding hotel arrangements must begin with the TBID Sales Manager.

CRITERIA

  • Exclusively use the TBID lodging partners for all lodging needs unless the event creates the need for citywide lodging participation.
  • Market and promote the event, Destination Missoula and all TBID lodging partners starting a minimum of 90 days prior to the event start date.
  • Marketing efforts should include, but are not limited to:
    • Use of Destination Missoula and TBID logos.
    • Promotion of all TBID lodging partners.
    • All applicable Destination Missoula tourism websites (i.e. DestinationMissoula.org, PlayMissoula.org and/or MissoulaMeetings.com).
    • Acknowledgment of funding awarded included in all event collateral (i.e. This event was produced with support from Destination Missoula & the TBID.).
    • Direct links to all TBID lodging partners, Destination Missoula and the TBID listed on all event websites.
    • A Destination Missoula and/or TBID banner will be hung at the event location for the duration of the event. Said banner will be supplied by Destination Missoula-TBID.
    • Provide a written post event report to Destination Missoula-TBID no later than 30 days after the event end date. If said report is not received by the applicable due date, the remaining 50% of the grant funds will not be awarded.
    • Post event report should include, but is not limited to the following:
    • Total number of local (number of attendees, delegates or visitors not staying overnight) event participants and spectators.
    • Total number of out of town (number of attendees, delegates or visitors staying at least one night) event participants and spectators.
    • The total number of hotel room nights generated in Missoula. (Room Night Calculation: Number of Rooms x Number of Nights = Room Nights).
    • A detailed list of each TBID lodging partner utilized and how many room nights they received.
    • Estimated total economic impact that the event had on Missoula.
    • The level of event growth that was a result of the grant funds received.
    • An event survey asking event and tourism specific questions. This survey can be conducted online, through event registration, and/or at the event. Destination Missoula-TBID will provide a sample survey. Custom surveys may be used, but must be pre-approved by the Destination Missoula-TBID staff.

APPLICATION DUE DATES

  • March 1st by 5pm MST:             Application deadline for events taking place the following October or beyond.
  • September 1st by 5pm MST:      Application deadline for events taking place the following April or beyond.

APPLICATION PROCESS

Step One: Eligible applicants must complete the standard grant application form and submit it by the appropriate application deadline (March 1 or September 1). A Destination Missoula-TBID staff member will confirm the receipt of your application within 2 business days via email. If you do not receive confirmation please contact Destination Missoula-TBID at 406-532-3282.

Step Two: A Destination Missoula-TBID staff member will review all applications for eligibility after the deadline. Applications that do not meet all the criteria, are incomplete, do not include required event documents or are received past the deadline listed above will automatically be disqualified, and will be notified.

Step Three: All qualified applications will be submitted to the Grant Selection Committee for review and scoring. All applications that score a minimum of 60 points will be given an interview with the Grant Selection Committee and will be contacted by a Destination Missoula-TBID staff member.

Step Four: After applicant interviews have been conducted the grant selection committee will deliberate to select successful grant requests. A Destination Missoula-TBID staff member will contact each applicant to inform them of the outcome. All grants will be awarded by either April 1st or October 1st, depending on the grant application cycle.

Before grants can be awarded, grant recipients are required to sign a letter of agreement committing to meet all the criteria previously listed in this document. After the letter of agreement has been signed, 50% of the grant will be awarded and the remaining 50% will be awarded when the complete post event report is received. The report must be submitted to services@destinationmissoula.org no later than 30 days post your event end date.  If the report is received past the deadline, or if 75% of the committed new hotel room nights are not realized, the remaining grant funds will not be awarded.

APPLICATION SCORING

Each application will be scored using identical criteria and can earn a maximum of 130 points. The point distribution is as follows:

  • Maximum 30 Points – New room nights generated
  • Maximum 15 Points – Event taking place in off season (October-April)
  • Maximum 10 Points – New event
  • Maximum 30 Points – Application questions
  • Maximum 20 Points – Budget Plan
  • Maximum 7 Points – Marketing Plan
  • Maximum 3 Points – Event Planning Timeline
  • Maximum 15 Points – Interview process