The Smith Mountain Lake Regional Chamber of Commerce will receive a $9,878 grant from the Virginia Tourism Corporation (VTC) Marketing Leverage Program.

The chamber will receive funds for its "Smith Mountain Lake Online Marketing and Responsive Website Campaign."

The chamber partnered with the Franklin County Office of Economic Development and Bedford Tourism and Welcome Center to supply $9,878 in matching funds for the project.

The website campaign digitally heightens awareness of Smith Mountain Lake as an affordable, easy-access vacation and recreation destination. With continued high gas prices, time constraints and economic challenges, many travelers are seeking affordable get-away options, according to the chamber. This campaign maximizes the central location of Smith

Mountain Lake as an easy drive from all points in Virginia and the surrounding states.

In total, VTC awarded more than $852,000 for 46 tourism marketing projects across the state to help increase visitation and revenue for Virginia's localities through tourism.

The grants are designed to help local and regional tourism entities attract more visitors by leveraging local marketing dollars, and will ultimately impact at least 195 other statewide tourism entities.

The local organizations match the state grant funds by a minimum of 2:1 in order to support marketing projects. This funding cycle, the local partners will match the VTC grant dollars with more than $2.1 million, providing more than $3 million in new marketing to increase visitation to Virginia.

Tourism is an instant revenue generator for Virginia. In 2013, tourism generated $21.5 billion in revenue, supported 213,000 jobs and provided $1.42 billion in state and local taxes.

Visit www.Virginia.org to learn more about vacation destinations in Virginia or call 1-800-VISITVA to receive a free Virginia is for Lovers travel guide.



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