At the Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) meeting on Thursday, September 26, elected officials voted to allocate $100,000 from the FY 2020 DT District Large Event grant funds. Five applications were received, but an evaluation committee only recommended four of them to be approved by the CRA board.
This past May, the CRA board approved $100,000 in fiscal year 2020 funding to be put towards the Downtown Large Event grant program. As noted by the agenda item, the purpose of the Downtown Large Event grant program is to provide support to special events that promote the goals and objectives of the DT District Community Redevelopment Plans, attract a regional audience (including attendees from other states), and generate economic activity in the DT District.
First-time event applicants can apply for a maximum of $40,000, with repeat applicants eligible to apply for a maximum of $25,000. In all cases, the minimum large event funding request is $10,000. The application window was open for four weeks, from June 3rd to June 28th.
Five applications were received during this time. They were:
- Ladies Learning to Lead (L3) – Tallahassee Wing Festival – requested $40,000
- LeMoyne Art Foundation – Chain of Parks Art Festival – requested $25,000
- Southern Shakespeare Company – Southern Shakespeare Festival – requested $25,000
- Springtime Tallahassee – Springtime Tallahassee Festival – requested $25,000
- Word of South – Word of South Festival – requested $25,000
A three-person evaluation committee was tasked with reviewing each application. Using a competitive evaluation process, each application was assigned a score. Only applications with a minimum score of 70 would be considered for funding. The Ladies Learning to Lead application did not meet this requirement, and therefore is not recommended for funding.
The evaluation committee recommended that the other four applications be approved.