New grant funding available now to reinvigorate local events calendar

Mildura Rural City Council has launched its Events Recovery Grants program, providing new opportunities for local organisers to apply for funding for events between now and December 2021.

The new program includes a quick turnaround Live Entertainment grant to encourage small-scale live outdoor entertainment within COVID-19 restrictions.

The Live Entertainment grant will in the short term encourage more live outdoor events over coming months, but longer term allow local hospitality venues and event organisers to apply for funding for larger events as pandemic restrictions allow.

It will also help bolster Sunraysia’s traditionally busy summer holiday events calendar, which has been severely impacted by COVID-19.

An example is the popular New Year’s Eve community event at Nowingi Place, which Council has been forced to cancel due to the lack of clarity around restrictions at the end of December, and the timeframes needed to plan and organise such a large event in the face of this uncertainty.

Small businesses can apply for up to four Live Entertainment grants of $500 to pay for local artists to perform at their venue. This is aimed at providing more opportunities for venues to reconnect with the community, including potential New Year’s Eve and other small-scale holiday period events.

Council’s General Manager Community Martin Hawson said the Events Recovery Grants program was designed to help reinvigorate the region’s events calendar, stimulate the local economy and support locals and visitors by providing entertainment options within COVID-19 restrictions.

The Live Entertainment grants are among five categories included in the Events Recovery Grants program to support businesses and community groups. They include:

Major Events

Between $7500 and $20,000

Large Community Events

Up to $5000

Small Community Events

Up to $2500

Live Entertainment

Four grants of $500 per business

Business Events and Conferences

Between $2500 and $20,000.

Businesses and not-for-profit organisations are invited to apply for grants now for events not already assessed for funding in 2020-21.

Applications are open until 11 June 2021 and can be made for events that occur before 31 December 2021.

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