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Thursday, September 29, 2011

Want Event Funding? Submit Your Ideas Now!

Special Events Funding Deadline October 31st!

Editorial: Suzanne Sholer Omemee Pigeon eFlyer editor B.A. B.Ed.
Special Events Economic Development Partnership Fund offers local events funding provided events meet the following criteria:
  • Events must specifically target event attendance from outside the boundaries of Kawartha Lakes
  • Events must anticipate having a significant economic impact to the host community
  • Events must stimulate overnight stays
  • Events must stimulate incremental spending across all business sectors
Small communities within City of Kawartha Lakes can qualify for this funding. Read on to find out how to take part in the Special Events Discussion Group,and get FREE help promoting your group or business!

    Accommodation: Funding Roadblock For Smaller Communities?

    Previously, small rural events could count on a hand from tax dollars with special events funding. However, new post amalgamation guidelines, seem to funnel tax dollars only to areas with accommodation facilities in the traditional sense of the word. Rather than grumbling about post-amalgamation one tier government draining rural residents’ pockets, and short shafting smaller communities in the 'City of Kawartha Lakes' out of economic stimulus funding of single day events; groups and businesses need to take a more collaborative approach, examine their unique selling ponts,and use some creative 'out-of-the-box' thinking to turn some of their existing assets into two-day events. Although this is written with a focus on Omemee events,the points could be used for any of the smaller communities in City of Kawartha Lakes.

    Accommodating Visitors
    After speaking with the Economic Development Council Office,this doesn't seem to be such a large stumbling block after all. There are no stipulations stating what type of accommodations people need to use. Let's examine the accommodations Omemee has for example. Emily Park, just outside Omemee, offers a variety of camp-sites, there are six nearby Bed and Breakfasts,including a brand new Bed and Breakfast opening at Seven Gables. Omemee also has fields,and fields of space. Perhaps Omemee could take a tip or two from the Havelock Jamboree. After all, local business, Don-on-the-Job, has had a hand in co-ordinating 'taking care of business' for Havelock Jamboree,and many other large events for many years.

    Past Events Stretched
    Canada Day Weekend - Celebrating Our Past and Future
    Omemee Pioneer Day and Downeyville Day have plenty of potential to become a two or even three day event,especially with the famous Lioness Pancake Breakfast.Throw in a dance, perhaps a battle of the bands, a pioneer camp out for the kids while Mum and Dad are out partying, and we have the makings of a unique weekend.
    Kayak Bass Fishing Tournaments
    Chris Noble ran the first Bass Fishing tournament earlier this year, and the  Omemee Christian Men's Fellowship held a Free BBQ,at the beach where they were 'fishing for men'. Another Bass Fishing tournament is scheduled for October 29th. With the Bass Fishing enthusiasts having to make an early morning start,this event lends itself well to becoming a two-day event,with a 'Welcome Dance' or 'Tall Tale Telling Contest' the night before, with casting competitions,fly tying demos etc, thrown in for good measure.
    Omemee Jams
    Omemee Legion welcomes musicians every other Saturday to perform at Jam sessions,and Doug Kennedy co-ordinated two 2-day events this year at Green Side Farms on Grassy Road,one a tree planting effort,and the other a good old-fashioned Jam session. Where did their participants stay? Doug offered to let visitors camp out for free on his farm. There's innovative thinking there!
    Other Ongoing Events
    Other local ongoing events in the Omemee area include: Curling, Hockey, Cycling, Soccer, Washers Tournaments,Whiffle ball Tournaments, Cards, Church dinners, Rock Concerts, Storytelling, Gardening,Horsemanship events,and more -all of which could be expanded. We are simply being challenged to think bigger,and coax the world to discover the many talents,activities,and resources we ave available.
    What the Funding Covers
    This special events funding covers advertising and entertainment. There is no double dipping allowed, However,you can apply for funding from various sources for different parts of the event. For example, Parks and Recreation has Fireworks funding available,so it would be best to apply separately for Fireworks funding,and to apply for funding to cover hiring local musicians, like Derek McGrath (national TV star), Doug Kennedy, and Lucya Fatima Almeida (with the award-winning Jim Heineman band), Magician Jason Chessar, balloonologists Matt and Mrs. Twist, professional bird handler Nancy Daniels, and more - there is a lot of local talent available.
    Additional Funding Resources
    Some entertainment funding might also be accessed through Canada and Ontario Arts Council Grants as well, in addition to Trillium Foundation Grants.
    Get Involved!
    So all that is needed is for each group and business owner to take responsibility for the promotion of their individual group,or business,by sending in 3 activities in order of preference, they would like promoted as part of the Canada Day Weekend Homecoming, a Bass Fishing Festival, or any other Festival you would like to promote. I'm starting on the forms today, So email your input to http://scr,im/omemee. and you will receive an invitation to the Special Events Discussion Group.
    I'm willing to tackle the paper work. What are you willing to do?
    Applying for funding will take creativity, to plan multi-day events which will meet these criteria, and build an accommodation component into the plan.
    From The City of Kawartha Lakes
    The City of Kawartha Lakes proudly supports special events in the community. To assist groups in their promotion of special events, the Economic Development Office manages a 'Special Events Economic Development Partnership Fund', in accordance with Council’s policy.
    Completed applications must be received at the City of Kawartha Lakes Economic Development Office at 180 Kent Street West, Lindsay by no later than 4:00 pm, on Monday October 31st.  The second intake deadline will be the end of April, 2012.
    This Special Events Economic Development Partnership Fund Program enables Kawartha Lakes to focus its resources on events that increase non-resident spending activities and stimulate wealth generation for the local business community. It is based on building sustainability and growth through the attraction of a broad tourist base and encouraging cross promotion to other events, attractions and services. Ultimately, the goal is to present Kawartha Lakes as the travel destination of choice, through the appeal of unique events showcasing the best in entertainment, culture, heritage and authentic rural fun.
    Application forms are available upon request at the Economic Development office at 180 Kent Street West, Lindsay or online at and For more information on this funding partnership opportunity, call the Economic Development office at 705-324-9411 ext. 1232 or email

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