2023 Explore Elmhurst Community Grant Program
Special Events and Cultural Activities Supporting Local Tourism
The City's Explore Elmhurst Community Grant provides funding for local events and cultural activities that promote attracting visitors and overnight nonresidents to the City of Elmhurst. The provision of these funds will assist qualified organization with the promotion of tourism activities that directly attract visitors to Elmhurst, create a positive image, and build positive publicity for the City.
The City of Elmhurst has provided this program to provide support for local tourism programs, attractions and events that will enhance the marketing of the City of Elmhurst to visitors. Increased hotel occupancy positively impacts the economic vibrancy of our community and supports our local economy. Events and activities that have the potential to attract overnight nonresidents increasing local hotel occupancy as well as events that provide economic opportunities for Elmhurst businesses and organizations will be considered.
Applicants for the Explore Elmhurst Grant must be organizations seeking to produce and promote a clearly defined festival, program, event or cultural activity that promotes attracting visitors and overnight nonresident visitors to the City of Elmhurst. All events must show the potential to generate overnight hotels stays, provide economic development opportunities to Elmhurst businesses and organizations, and increase the visibility of Elmhurst tourism, attraction and events.
The Explore Elmhurst Grant is geared towards funding non-for-profit 501c(3) organizations, not private businesses.
Grant Guidelines and Requirements:
- The overall budget for a particular event or promotion must accompany the application in the format provided through the grant application.
- The event must occur within the City of Elmhurst.
- Projects should promote Elmhurst as a destination by promoting local dining, shopping, attractions, and lodging. Events should not promote the use of lodging facilities located outside of the City of Elmhurst.
- A representative from the group applying for the grant must be willing to attend an application review meeting held at City Hall. Applicants may be asked to attend a City Council Committee level meeting.
- All grant recipients are encouraged to purchase goods and services from businesses located in the City of Elmhurst whenever possible.
- All printed material and/or other advertising media paid for with the Explore Elmhurst Grant funds must include the Explore Elmhurst logo along with the following credit line: Financial support provided by the Explore Elmhurst Grant Program.
Applications will be assessed based upon criteria including, but not limited to the following:
- Demonstrate collaboration, support, and cooperation among Elmhurst organizations
- Introduce new events or activities to Elmhurst
- Ability of the event to attract overnight visitors in past or present year(s)
- Ability of the event to grow over two or more years
- Food, beverage and retail expenditures by out of market visitors and the extent to which the event provides economic opportunities for Elmhurst businesses and organizations
- Ability of the event to project a positive image of the City of Elmhurst and to increase the visibility of Elmhurst tourism, attraction, and activities
Criteria and Evaluation Process:
The City of Elmhurst will consider factors such as the type and scope of the applying organization or project, the applicant’s resources, the impact of the project, the timetable, the number of applicants received, and the amount requested when evaluating grant applications. Additional considerations regarding the grant award include:
- The grant committee may choose to fund a portion of any request based on availability of funds.
- The grant committee may not support event/attraction advertising outside the area for an event/attraction that has shown a decrease in attendance over the past year(s).
- Applicants who file projects yearly are encouraged to consider new promotions or new approaches to support or upgrade their event. Applicants submitting the same qualified projects year after year after may receive a lower percentage of funding or possibly no funding at all.
- The Explore Elmhurst Grant is geared towards funding non-for-profit 501c(3) organizations, not private businesses. Organizations may file joint projects.
Priority will be given to organizations which directly utilize grant funds towards operating costs for proposed events. These funds are not intended to supplement charitable giving. Applicants must demonstrate how grant funds are critical to the success of the proposed project(s). The grant is not intended for virtual/online events and programs.
All printed material and/or other advertising media paid for with the Explore Elmhurst Grant funds must include the Explore Elmhurst logo and the following credit line: Financial support provided by the Explore Elmhurst Grant Program.
A project is considered ineligible if it does not contribute to the overall intent of bringing additional tourists and visitors into the City of Elmhurst.
Post Event Summary:
A post event summary shall be completed using the forms provided by the City within 90 days of completion of the event. Failure to submit a post-event summary or the submission of an incomplete summary may affect the applicant’s ability to receive future grant funding. Post event summaries shall include:
- Estimated attendance and hotel room nights generated and a description of the method used to estimate attendance.
- Summary of advertising placed to promote the event. Include examples of event marketing pieces and advertisements.
- General assessment of the event, which addresses the success of the event and any concerns or recommendations for changes.
- Comparison between the expected and actual outcomes of the program.
- Description of the organization’s long term plans for funding of this project or event.
Grant Workshop/Presentation – Qualified grant applicants will be asked to present to the Explore Elmhurst Community Grant Committee on February 15th and February 16th at City Hall. City Staff will be in contact with applicants to schedule presentation time.
The Explore Elmhurst Grant Application is available for download here. Applications can also be picked up at the Office of the City Manager located at Elmhurst City Hall, 209 N. York Street. Any questions about the grant application or guidelines can be addressed by calling 630.530.3010.
Deadline for submission: Applications for the Explore Elmhurst Grant must be received by 4:00 p.m. on Monday, February 6, 2023.
For more information on the Explore Elmhurst Grant Program, please email CityAdmin@elmhurst.org or call 630.530.3010.