Virginia Tourism announces Crush Friday grant recipients

virginiaVirginia Tourism Corporation will fund 25 local tourism programs for its “Crush Friday” program grant fund. “Crush Friday” is part of VTC’s ongoing efforts to support U.S. Travel’s “Project: Time Off” initiative, encouraging citizens to utilize unused vacation days.

In total, VTC awarded $250,000 to 25tourism marketing projects across the Commonwealth to help increase visitation and revenue for Virginia’s localities through tourism. More than 155 partners will participate in this cross-state marketing program effort.

“We are thrilled to be supporting U.S. Travel’s Project: Time Off with our brand new Crush Fridaycampaign. The Crush Friday initiative is an engaging, creative, and collaborative way for Virginia localities to leverage critical marketing dollars to attract more visitors to the Commonwealth, increasing the economic impact of tourism,” said Rita McClenny, president and CEO of Virginia Tourism Corporation. “This program will also help to change the way millennials think about vacation and the importance of time off not only to their quality of life, but quality of work.”

Each locality received a $10,000 grant for its Crush Friday project. Localities were required to partner with at least five other tourism businesses to supply matched marketing efforts for the project.

American workers left 662 million vacation days on the table last year. Of these workers, the millennial sub-set is the most likely to want to be seen as work martyrs. In an effort to be seen as valuable to the company a work martyr is the most likely to forego taking vacation days. The VTC Crush FridayProgram is designed to encourage the millennial work martyr to give vacation a try. VTC and its industry partners aim to change that mindset and show the benefit that even one day of vacation can have. Virginia and their localities offer a call to millennials to take a well-deserved Friday and crush it.

Tourism is an instant revenue generator for Virginia. In 2016, tourism generated $24 billion in revenue, supported nearly 230,000 jobs and provided $1.7 billion in state and local taxes. Dollars invested in tourism are proven to provide a 7:1 return in tax revenue for Virginia, and the grant awards and matching funds provide a stimulus to localities seeking to increase tourism visitation and revenue.

Grant recipients

Martinsville-Henry County
Visit Virginia’s Blue Ridge
Bristol Convention & Visitors Bureau
Fredericksburg Regional Tourism Partnership
Southwest Virginia Cultural Heritage Foundation
Highland County Chamber of Commerce
Lynchburg Office of Economic Development and Tourism
Alleghany Highlands Chamber of Commerce & Tourism
Culpeper Tourism and Economic Development
Smithfield & Isle of Wight Convention & Visitors Bureau
Giles County
Madison County Visitor Center
Abingdon Convention and Visitors Bureau
Heart of Appalachia Tourism Authority
Dickenson County Visitor Center/Chamber of Commerce
City of Galax
Wytheville Convention & Visitors Bureau
Prince William County Office of Tourism
Luray-Page County Chamber of Commerce
Danville/Pittsylvania County Chamber of Commerce
Floyd County Tourism Office
Mecklenburg County Tourism Office
Town of Marion
Visit Norfolk
Chincoteague Chamber of Commerce & Visitors Center


Have a story idea or a news tip? Email editor Chris Graham at [email protected] Subscribe to AFP podcasts on Apple PodcastsSpotifyPandora and YouTube.