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Community Celebrations Grant Program

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> Community Celebrations Grant Program

Community Celebrations Grant Program

Summary of Funding Opportunity

Community Celebrations Grants are awarded twice a year by Tompkins County to not-for-profit organizations and municipalities to support events in our community that convey our unique culture and history. Applications are typically due in mid-February and mid-September.  These grants allow us to dig into our past, to educate the public about our cultural inheritances, to give residents a way of understanding and enjoying local culture, and to expand contemporary local culture in ways that are informative, educational, and just plain fun. These grants are available to any recognized community within the County, including municipalities and other government entities; traditional, cultural, and ethnic organizations; and groups that hope to build on historical, architectural, musical, culinary, agricultural, and/or cultural traditions by providing venues for local performers and local products.

The goal of these grants is to enhance the quality of life for residents. Community Celebrations Grants are funded by a room occupancy tax collected by hotels and B&Bs in Tompkins County. This is one of several grant programs of the Tompkins County Tourism Program, for which the Strategic Tourism Planning Board provides oversight and strategic direction.

A celebration is an event, program, or series of events endorsed by a municipality or other recognized community that is free and open to all, and is planned by community members as a benefit to the community. A celebration is also defined as an observance, commemoration, jubilation, inauguration, presentation, or any other "red letter day" or salute that has meaning for the community. A community is a recognized municipality, or a part thereof, within Tompkins County, a traditional, cultural, and/or ethnic organization; and groups that hope to build on historical, architectural, musical, culinary, agricultural, and/or cultural traditions.

Individual grants may be requested for up to $2,000. The minimum request is $500. The average award is $1,250 with some grant recipients receiving more and some receiving less. This program typically has less funding available than the total funds requested. In Fall 2018, a total of $11,960 is available for Community Celebration grants.

To complete an application, first read the grant guidelines, then complete the online application by the deadline. Please NoteCommunity Celebrations grant applications are accepted online through the Apricot grant management system. In addition, eligible not-for-profit organizations may now apply directly. Municipalities are also eligible, as they have been in the past. See the grant guidelines and and the step-by-step instructions available below for how to apply.

Grant Guidelines (Click to Download)


Calendar of Community Celebrations in Tompkins County which have been funded in the past.

Tompkins Festivals Program Workshops - topics include:

Tompkins Festivals Program Event Planning Manual - great resource for anyone planning an event in Tompkins County and highly recommended for tourism grant applicants seeking event-related support.