Fox Cities Convention & Visitors Bureau awarded year-two state tourism marketing grant

Grant supports Fox Cities Originals a newly launched brand campaign to increase visitation and tourism

Published Tuesday, October 13, 2020

The Fox Cities Convention & Visitors Bureau (FCCVB) has been awarded a $39,550 Year-Two Joint Effort Marketing (JEM) Grant from the Wisconsin Department of Tourism for continued development, implementation and support of the Fox Cities Originals brand.


The FCCVB Fox Cities Originals brand was launched in January 2020, in part, with the support of a Year-One JEM Grant. The campaign aims to draw visitors, drive tourism and increase economic growth in the Fox Cities by showcasing the original and unique activities, attractions, eateries, shops, people and attributes that make the Fox Cities such a dynamic destination.


“This second-year funding demonstrates strong confidence in our newly launched brand and ongoing support to further enhance the Fox Cities Originals to drive visitation, tourism and economic development in the Fox Cities,” FCCVB Director of Marketing Communications Beth Knapinski said. “Our brand has shown its strengthen and versatility in light of the COVID19 health situation, and we will lean into and leverage the brand to help lead an economic recovery for our region, keep the Fox Cities top of mind for potential visitors and strongly position our destination for the rebound.”  


Grant funds will go toward campaign creative development; digital, social and traditional media buys; and public relations efforts in target markets.


Visitor spending in the Fox Cities grew to a record-setting $511 million in 2019, supported more than 5,850 jobs in the region and created $114 million in income for Fox Cities residents. Visitor spending is tracked annually in five categories: lodging, food and beverage, retail, recreation and local transportation.


“I applaud both destinations for their foresight and planning to stimulate economic growth,” said Tourism Secretary-designee Sara Meaney said in a press release issued by the Wisconsin Department of Tourism on October 7 highlighting the FCCVB and the City of Burlington as grant recipients. “We are pleased to support these organizations, as each recipient provided thoughtful plans based on research and insights to help them reposition themselves and better communicate the fantastic destinations they are.”


In fiscal year 2019, 62 JEM projects were funded, awarding a total of more than $1.1 million. Visitor expenditures driven by the marketing from those projects exceeded $61 million. JEM grant funds are available to non-profit organizations for the promotion of Wisconsin tourism events and destinations. The state can fund up to 50 percent of a project's second-year advertising and marketing costs and also provides support to third-year projects with decreased funding amounts to help the projects become self-sustaining. For information on the JEM Program and application materials, visit