Dept. of Tourism: Abbotsford/Colby Area Chamber of Commerce receives tourism grant


Danielle Johnson, Wisconsin Department of Tourism

608-266-0458; [email protected]

Paula Ruesch , Abbotsford/Colby Area Chamber of Commerce

715-223-8509; [email protected]

New Lama and Craft A-Faire event to increase marketing power

ABBOTSFORD, Wis. (Sept. 26, 2012) – The Abbotsford/Colby Area Chamber of Commerce is able to expand marketing efforts for their event, Lama and Craft A-Faire, Oct. 13-14, with the help of a $6,754.50 Joint Effort Marketing (JEM) grant. Presented by Department of Tourism Regional Tourism Specialist Sarah Pischer, this new event is designed to commemorate the agricultural heritage of the area and showcase the art behind the area’s rural history. The project is expected generate an economic impact of $21,378 from traveler spending at area hotels, restaurants and stores.

“This JEM grant will assist the chamber expand its promotional efforts and tap new markets,” said Tourism Secretary Stephanie Klett. “This expanded marketing will attract new visitors, grow the event and generate a greater economic impact for the area.”

The event, Oct 13-14, 2012, will feature a variety of family friendly activities, such as horse drawn wagon rides, polka and square dancing, a llama cart race, llama limbo & leap, Lama Trot Run (5K run / 3K walk), fiber art demo’s and craft sale, Kid’s games, live animal exhibits, antique tractor exhibits, food vendors, as well as live music. Grant dollars will fund print, radio and online advertising, as well as email marketing efforts. A comprehensive public relations plan will complement the paid advertising, as well.

In fiscal 2012, the Department funded 50 Joint Effort Marketing projects, awarding a total of over $1.1 million dollars. Visitor expenditures driven by the marketing from these projects will exceed $29 million.

“We are excited about the opportunity of hosting this event, without the JEM grant we would not be able to advertise to as many people as we are now,” said Paula Ruesch with the Abbotsford/Colby Area Chamber of Commerce. “We are expecting a huge turnout, this is a unique idea to this area and which will benefit our whole community.”

JEM grant funds are available to non-profit organizations for the promotion of Wisconsin tourism events and destinations. The state can fund up to 75 percent of a project’s first-year advertising and marketing costs, and provide support for second- and third-year projects with decreasing amounts for funding until projects become self-sustaining. For information on the JEM Program and application materials, visit

The mission of the Wisconsin Department of Tourism is to market the State as the Midwest’s premier travel destination by executing industry-leading marketing programs and establishing strategic partnerships. The Department plays a significant role in generating greater economic impact and jobs for Wisconsin. The portal for traveler information can be found at: