Rural Tourism Conference Sponsorship

The Colorado Tourism Office sponsors annual conferences in Colorado to support rural tourism development, education, and training opportunities for partners across rural Colorado. Sponsorships are up to $5,000 cash per event.

  Due to COVID-19, we postponed applications from July 1, 2020 to June 30, 2021. Check back for updates or sign up for Colorado Tourism Office email updates.


Type: Sponsorship

For: Tourism partners

Amount: Up to $5000 per event

Application period: Summer and late fall

OEDIT division: Colorado Tourism Office


Your conference needs to:

  • provide education or training opportunities for members of the rural Colorado tourism industry
  • be hosted by a Colorado nonprofit organization or municipality that is involved with the tourism industry
  • occur annually
  • be in at least the second year of operation

Entities are not eligible if they failed to fulfill past Colorado Tourism Office grant award requirements within the last year. These requirements include project completion, submitting required reporting, proper use of grant funds, lack of acknowledgment, and changes to grant proposal without approval.

You may not use this sponsorship for:

  • alcoholic beverages
  • salary/staffing costs
  • travel expenses

 Applications are not currently being accepted. Please sign up for the Colorado Tourism Office email updates to stay informed on this program.

The application period opens twice a year in summer and late fall.

Apply online through the OEDIT application portal. Log in or create a new account. New users are manually added to the portal for security reasons, so it may take several days to activate your account.

Application Questions
The questions below are only a reference and do not include all of the information you need to include in the application. For each narrative question response, there is a limit of 2,500 characters including spaces and punctuation.

  • Provide a brief description of your organization.
  • Describe the purpose of the conference.
  • Describe how you will measure the success of this conference.
  • Describe how the Colorado Tourism Office sponsorship funds will support the conference.
  • Describe how the conference will acknowledge the Colorado Tourism Office’s sponsorship through marketing, website, conference signage, program, etc.
  • Provide a timeline for the conference, including a description of the proposed planning period, event dates, and post-event activities (if applicable). Indicate when the sponsorship funding is required and when, if granted, you would spend it.
  • Describe your plans for marketing the conference.
  • List other conference partners, both financial and non-financial, and indicate each partner’s level of support. Provide both names and amounts.
  • List officers in your organization. Indicate whether any officers have a business or family connection with the State of Colorado government. If so, describe the connections.
  • List the type of education and/or training opportunities this conference will provide for rural members of the tourism industry. Provide details of breakout sessions and keynote speakers if possible.
  • Describe the audience for your conference. Is it for a specific tourism-related industry segment? Is it for tourism industry members from rural Colorado? If so, describe the segment and the proposed benefit.
  • What is the estimated attendance for this conference?
  • Provide a statement of financial need.
  • Submit a line item budget.
  • Has the Colorado Tourism Office sponsored your conference before? If yes, in what years?
  • If yes to the previous question, provide documented outcomes of previous Colorado Tourism Office sponsorships. 

Supporting Documents
You will need to provide a certificate of Good Standing from the Colorado Secretary of State.

This is a competitive award program, and not all applicants receive the sponsorship. A panel of industry partners and Colorado Tourism Office staff reviews applications and recommends awards based on application scores and available funds. The panel reviews applications on these criteria:

Merit (40%)
You will need to show:

  • the applicant’s qualifications, background, and experience, including dedication to rural Colorado tourism and passion for the tourism industry
  • overall strength of the application request with clear logic and adequate details of conference purpose and intended audience

Impact (40%)
You will need to show:

  • measurable benefits for Colorado’s rural tourism industry
  • rural tourism efforts of audience will be furthered through conference education and training opportunities

Financial Need and Budget (20%)
You will need to show:

  • high degree of financial need
  • budget is feasible and costs are appropriate

The Colorado Tourism Office will send you the sponsorship funds after executing a purchase order.

All conference advertising and promotional materials need to acknowledge funding by the Colorado Tourism Office and include the official Colorado Tourism Office logo. The Colorado Tourism Office should receive, at minimum, two conference registrations.

You need to complete an online report within 60 days of the end of the conference.

You need to return any Colorado Tourism Office sponsorship funds not used for the intended stated purpose as outlined in the application, or funds not used in their entirety for the intended stated purpose.

In 2020, we funded these organizations:

  • Colorado Agritourism Association and Colorado Dude and Guest Ranch Association Conference
  • San Luis Valley Tourism Conference
  • Southern Colorado Summit
  • T.H.E. Trail Summit

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