• Travel and Fanfare

RI: Who Received Millions in Covid Tourism Grants

GoLocalProv

Rhode Island Commerce announced the awarding of grants through the state’s hospitality, arts and tourism (HArT) relief program. The awards consisted of $4.7 million to 62 arts and tourism organizations for Engagement, Service, and Resiliency (“ESR”) activities.


In addition to ESR funds, the HArT program has also awarded 40 organizations direct support grants totaling $8 million. Combined with the first round of awards, the total amount granted by the HArT program totals $14.1 million to 95 organizations.

The HArT grant program aims to prevent the long-term closure of arts, culture, hospitality and tourism businesses and institutions, while also building resiliency, workforce support, and community engagement. The grants announced today are designed to spur further economic activity, create safe convening opportunities, and allow increased and accessible artistic and tourist-friendly opportunities.


“The State Arts Council is proud to partner with Commerce in helping arts and culture organizations through the very real challenges they face during this pandemic,” said Randall Rosenbaum, Executive Director of the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts. “The arts were the first sector affected by the onset of COVID-19, and the economic losses the arts community has experienced have been staggering. Thanks to Secretary Pryor and Commerce, we hope to soon see the arts back to full strength, contributing to the economic and cultural well-being of our state.”


HArT Program ESR Awards Total Organizations Awarded ESR Funds:

79 Total ESR Funds Awarded: $6,136,464.47


  • Apponaug Brewing Company, Inc. - $170,000 (Warwick, RI): Create an outdoor beer garden right on the Pawtuxet River, which can be used by community organizations for hosting fundraisers and other community functions.

  • AS220 - $19,761 (Providence, RI): (1) Produce and release 15 online streaming performances through the organization’s AS220 Live Arts program and (2) make the AS220 Dance Studio available for instructors to conduct virtual dance instruction to remote audiences.

  • Atlantic Beach Hotel - $205,000 (Middletown, RI): (1) Offer hotel discount packages for remote workers and students and (2) make technology investments in conference rooms to facilitate remote meetings, virtual events, and safe workspaces.

  • Blackstone Valley Tourism Council - $114,400 (Pawtucket, RI): Establish a festive outdoor Christmas village with a Search for Santa riverboat explorer.

  • Block Island Maritime Institute dba BIMI - $7,740 (Block Island, RI): Technology investments for a virtual lecture series.

  • Brooklyn Coffee, Tea & Guest House - $9,850 (Providence, RI): (1) Enhance space to provide remote and safe workspace with upgraded technology; (2) expand virtual arts venue to offer additional programming; and (3) continue to hold Adventure Getaways to encourage patrons to visit and utilize coupons from local businesses.

  • Chapel Hotel LLC dba Hampton Inn & Suites Providence - $175,000 (Providence, RI): Launch a series of incentive, discount, and promotion packages for booking a hotel.

  • Collette - $125,000 (Pawtucket, RI): Work with IT consultants and internal team to redesign travel experiences for "Traveling Well" program to align with current and adapting restrictions.

  • Colonial Theatre School, Inc. dba Westerly Shakespeare in the Park - $8,750 (Westerly, RI): Produce a virtual performance of “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare,” a comedic play that provides a survey of Shakespeare’s dramatic repertoire through parody.

  • Comedy Connection - $32,083 (East Providence, RI): Create and host three virtual events— including a video podcast and variety comedy show—to livestream for the holidays.

  • Community String Project, Inc. - $10,300 (Bristol, RI): (1) Make COVID-safety related improvements to the Bristol State House for rehearsals and performances and (2) produce virtual performances and concerts for affiliated families and the community.

  • Destinationnewport.com, LLC - $6,400 (Newport, RI): Make improvements to the Destination Newport website to promote tourism opportunities in the state and highlight promotions with local businesses.

  • Eat Drink RI LLC - $33,507.72 (Coventry, RI): Produce a series of virtual cooking demonstrations with beverage pairings and local guests.

  • Elite Weddings and Events, LLC - $11,000 (Warwick, RI): Update and rebrand the business’ website and upgrade equipment to remain relevant in the industry both during and beyond the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • Everett - $38,000 (Providence, RI): (1) A virtual forum related to Black Lives Matter that will involve performance elements; (2) a virtual hour-long holiday comedy special with the Everett’s improv comedy group; (3) a virtual production of the theater performance Good Grief; (4) an online panel on incarceration for community members; and (5) online classes for underserved students in Providence.

  • Exchange St. Hotel LLC dba Homewood Suites Providence - $175,000 (Providence, RI): Launch a series of incentive, discount, and promotion packages for booking a hotel.

  • Explore Bristol - $14,000 (Bristol, RI): Make improvements to the Explore Bristol website and social media accounts to promote tourism opportunities in the state.

  • Federal Hill Commerce Association - $350,000 (Providence, RI): (1) Four daytime holiday events on 11/28, 12/5, 12/12, and 12/19—with both in-person and virtual activities such as live performances and (2) free delivery vouchers for consumers ordering food and merchandise from over 50 businesses on Federal Hill.

  • Festival Ballet Providence - $103,318.26 (Providence, RI): Produce a virtual showing of the Nutcracker to run in late December.

  • FirstWorks - $105,000 (Providence, RI): (1) Implement two virtual music programs in December (Holiday Sauce…Pandemic! and “The Democracy Suite”) and (2) plan for a virtual music festival and future virtual programming through upgraded technology and infrastructure.

  • Flickers, the Newport Film/Video Society & Arts Collaborative - $29,900 (Providence, RI): (1) Production of a Rhode Island International Film Festival special COVID-themed film festival in December 2020 and (2) a virtual education program for students through the KidsEye Filmmaking Workshop.

  • Gallery Events, LLC dba Machines with Magnets - $1,990 (Pawtucket, RI): Installing, digitizing, and promoting a virtual reality platform of the Look Who’s Coming to Dinner art exhibition.

  • G Pub / Ballroom at Providence G - $49,500 (Providence, RI): Produce a series of Goodbye 2020 virtual events featuring live performances from a variety of local artists (such as music, dance, poetry, open mic, and comedy, along with various film screenings and documentaries) and streamed virtually.Greater

  • Providence Warwick Convention and Visitors Bureau - $345,979 (Providence, RI): (1) Develop a virtual studio at the PWCVB office for hybrid meetings and sales efforts, with a virtual meeting planner event this month; (2) create a web-based meetings portal on GoProvidence.com better supporting the convention center and other event venues and hotel properties, further strengthening partner support and becoming a powerful sales tool for securing future meetings and conventions; (3) make website upgrades to showcase events and partner listings in a cleaner format; (5) work in partnership with the Rhode Island Hospitality Association to provide restaurants with $1,500 incentives for costs associated with: (a) donation of food items, (b) virtual dinners, (c) loyalty programs, (d) implementing new POS systems, (e) PAUSE-related marketing efforts, and (f) implementing curbside pickup programs.

  • Grey Sail Tap Room, LLC - $63,600 (Westerly, RI): Build outdoor covered beer garden to allow for safe outdoor seating and to allow community events and small functions outside (including free access to outdoor space for select nonprofit organizations).

  • Herreshoff Marine Museum - $64,120 (Bristol, RI): (1) Implement the Mimsy XG Collections Management System to make collections publicly available online; (2) continue the Code Flag Lima Project (online content); (3) create a virtual version of the Nathanael Greene Herreshoff Model Collection; and (4) hold Marine Trades Exploration Weeks for high school and college students.

  • Howard Johnson Motor Lodge - $135,000 (Middletown, RI): (1) Create and market package hotel deal to include gift cards to local restaurants and attractions and (2) Continue newly instituted Repeat Business Promotion package offering deep discounts for repeat stays.

  • Hyatt Place Warwick Providence Airport - $209,690 (Warwick, RI): (1) Provide a ‘We Care” remote work discount package of 60% and (2) provide a “Rooms for Responders/R4R” package offering 60% discounts for those needing to safely quarantine away from family.

  • Island Moving Company - $140,000 (Newport, RI): Produce a new independent film of its original production of Newport Nutcracker at Rosecliff, which has been reimagined as a short feature film. It will be made available for public viewing through three airings on RIPBS or by purchasing a ticket on the applicant’s site. A special edition for schools includes a comprehensive study guide for students in grades 1-6. Film premieres December 10 and is broadcast through December 30.

  • Jamestown Arts Center - $48,253.03 (Jamestown, RI): (1) Presenting an in-person art exhibition; (2) developing virtual programming, talks, and photography exhibits; (3) installing outdoor community art projects and public art; (4) developing in-person outdoor dance performances for the public; and (5) providing online classical music programming for school children.

  • Marcotte Music dba Take it to the Bridge - $6,000 (North Kingstown, RI): Produce a professional live stream musical performance and other virtual programming content that can be viewed by the public free of charge.

  • Marketing & Events Unlimited - $4,500 (Newport, RI): Produce and promote the Newport County Dinner Club Book.

  • Meadow Brook Inn - $77,000 (Charlestown, RI): (1) Converting live “in-person” events to virtual events, including virtual music, entertainment, and cultural events and (2) converting box truck to a food truck to expand business opportunities and food truck events.

  • newportFILM - $17,217.59 (Newport, RI): Stream five family-friendly documentaries free to community through December, along with live Q&A with filmmaker after each. Topics include the environment, arts, animals, social justice and music.

  • Newport Music Festival - $25,877.50 (Middletown, RI): (1) A Christmas Carol Music Radio Program, (2) the production of a Newport Music Festival Podcast, (3) a virtual winter concert, (4) masked pop-up caroling in front of nursing homes, (5) a virtual toy drive for the MLK Community Center, and (6) technology equipment upgrades for remote work/productions.

  • Newport Playhouse & Cabaret Restaurant, Inc. - $167,600 (Newport, RI): (1) Virtual programming targeted to seniors (e.g. musical event, play, cabaret); (2) in-person musical performances with food service; and (3) an upgraded HVAC system to address public health concerns.

  • O2 Global Chauffeured Service Inc. - $48,000 (East Greenwich, RI): Provide private tours in chauffeured vehicles to Rhode Island residents and tourists.

  • Greenwich Odeum - $6,000 (East Greenwich, RI): Produce a virtual holiday show that would involve upgrading technology and network connectivity.

  • Ormonde Productions, Inc. - $25,000 (Warren, RI): Produce virtual events, fundraisers, and corporate/community meetings using new technology and equipment.

  • Pawtucket Foundation - $69,000 (Pawtucket, RI): Install a mural on private property in a key area of downtown Pawtucket for placemaking.

  • Pelham Court Hotel Management Company LLC dba Pelham Court Hotel - $20,000 (Newport, RI): Promote hotel bookings targeting remote work, work from home, and long-term stay customers.

  • Perfection Valet Parking - $2,450 (North Kingstown, RI): Upgrade website to communicate health and safety restrictions and safety tips.

  • Providence Children’s Museum - $47,000 (Providence, RI): Producing online activities, virtual lectures and online classes that will bring the educational content of PCM into children’s homes through parent resources for stand-alone activities, webinars, and instructional videos.

  • Providence Performing Arts Center dba PPAC - $80,650 (Providence, RI): Pivot PPAC’s Arts Showcase program, which serves approximately 10,000 each year, to virtual programming.

  • Quality Inn - $350,000 (Middletown, RI): (1) Develop and implement a WorkCation hotel program for customers working remotely and (2) make necessary technology and equipment upgrades for the implementation of this program.

  • Quality Time, LLC - $31,000 (Middletown, RI): Quality Time LLC will provide 25% discount “Work from Home” and “Staycation” packages. R1 Indoor Karting - $285,544.15 (Lincoln, RI): Creating an outdoor entertainment space on property for live music and community events including local art and food truck events and a rent-free space for artists to create and sell their art.

  • Rhode Island Philharmonic Orchestra & Music School - $100,000 (Warwick, RI): Produce a series of live orchestral performances for livestreaming and/or limited in-person audiences (when in-person audiences are authorized under applicable public health guidelines).

  • Rhode Island Zoological Society dba Roger Williams Park Zoo - $350,000 (Providence, RI): Produce and implement a drive-through holiday light show.

  • Rhode Island Museum of Science & Art dba RIMOSA - $23,712 (Providence, RI): Artist / Inventors Foster and Newly Adoptive Families Program, which involves on-site programming in the arts. Programming can be shifted to virtual/remote programming, if necessary.

  • Roger Ceresi Productions - $4,000 (Warwick, RI): Produce a series of virtual music performances.

  • Rosemary's Dance Enterprises Inc.- $18,000 (Warren, RI): (1) Technology and equipment to produce virtual performances, facilitate virtual competitions, and conduct virtual classes and (2) additional class options for participants.

  • Saltwater Studio - $1,500 (Newport, RI): Develop ongoing and sustainable ways to hold safe art workshops for groups through adaptations to the studio, including the creation of both outdoor and indoor spaces for instruction.

  • Sarcastic Sweets LLC - $19,025.50 (Providence, RI): Hold a series of three drive-in movie screenings with food service provided by the applicant and additional mobile food trucks.

  • Sidy Maiga - $6,800 (Pawtucket, RI): Produce a series of drumming performances and lessons for students in Rhode Island, most specifically to low-income schools.

  • Spectrum Theatre Ensemble - $13,877.50 (Providence, RI): (1) Building a mobile stage to use for outdoor performances throughout the state until the theater can reopen at capacity and (2) producing virtual programming in December.

  • Stadium Theatre Foundation - $46,950 (Woonsocket, RI): Convert live performance schedule to all virtual performances; streaming 15 live events (music, dancing, sewing classes) in December free of charge for the community to stay engaged in local theater.

  • TEN31 Productions - $61,125.37 (Pawtucket, RI): A year-end dance performance with Metamorphosis Dance Company, which would either be broadcast live or pre-recorded for online streaming.

  • The Arctic Playhouse - $33,700 (West Warwick, RI): Update technology to develop online streaming content for patrons (e.g. Cabaret Club performances).

  • The Chorus of Westerly - $30,000 (Westerly, RI): (1) Release pre-recorded Chorus of Westerly performances online and (2) create a virtual holiday choral performance composed by choral members.

  • The Contemporary Theater Company - $33,244.44 (Wakefield, RI): (1) A virtual production of Wakefield Idol, (2) a virtual production of a Christmas Cocktail Cabaret, and (3) additional virtual programming.

  • The Dancin' Feelin' Ltd. dba The Dancing Feeling - $59,954.50 (Warwick, RI): (1) Develop a virtual Dance Showcase as a virtual, Livestream event for its students; (2) technology investments for online dance lessons; and (3) physical adaptation investments for addressed public health concerns.

  • The East Greenwich Chamber of Commerce - $12,000 (East Greenwich, RI): Marketing of COVID-safe activities throughout East Greenwich.

  • The Francis Malbone House Inn, Inc. - $210,000 (Newport, RI): Offer and promote discounts on room rates and gift cards to incentivize travelers.

  • The Knickerbocker Music Center, Inc. dba The Knick - $30,000 (Westerly, RI): Produce a series of 10 virtual concerts presented by The Knick (called Knick Live), some of which will be free to the public.

  • The Preservation Society of Newport County - $74,650 (Newport, RI): An outdoor holiday light show at The Breakers.

  • The Rhode Island Historical Society - $25,000 (Providence, RI): Produce virtual tours, events, educational programs, and other public programs, enabled through the purchase of technology and reaching community, student groups, and potential visitors.

  • The Sandra Feinstein-Gamm Theatre dba The Gamm Theatre - $64,470 (Warwick, RI): A holiday radio broadcast of It’s a Wonderful Life, which will broadcast on public radio multiple times in December.

  • The Talent Factory, LLC - $175,000 (North Kingstown, RI): Develop a Pop-Up Theater for outdoor performances, dance studios, and youth theatre programs.

  • The Wickford Art Association - $13,745.50 (North Kingstown, RI): Produce virtual programming (including livestreamed gallery openings, special events, artist features, and educational demonstrations) through purchasing adaptive technology, equipment, and a website.

  • The Wilbury Theatre Group - $41,131.72 (Providence, RI): Develop a community streaming studio for use by the Wilbury Theatre Group and community partners.

  • Trinity Repertory Company - $175,343.87 (Providence, RI): (1) An online production of “A Christmas Carol”; (2) interactive digital content; and (3) IT/technology support for live streaming.

  • Viking Motor Tours of Newport, Inc. - $11,000 (Newport, RI): Equipment and safety upgrades to three tour trolleys (plexiglass, sanitizing/fogging machine and mounted hand sanitizer) to be able to resume tours when safe.

  • Warwick Center for the Arts - $6,722.50 (Warwick, RI): (1) Offering online programming and limited in-person educational opportunities through technological improvements (programming includes Composition, Photography, and Drawing techniques for adults and children; several free “Artist Talks”; and a “Creative Retreat” for teenagers); (2) providing reduced class fees for participants; and (3) providing classroom space to artists as studio, workspace, and meeting space.

  • Warwick Hotel Associates dba Crowne Plaza Hotel - $38,000 (Warwick, RI): Promote discounted guest room rates via a Get Away Package, for locals to enjoy without leaving the state, in a safe and clean environment. Grant funds to offset the costs of offering these packages including a second night free, stay and fly package, free food delivery to room, credit to coffee shop and a day rate program.

  • Waterfront Concerts, LLC - $197,349.32 (East Providence, RI): Produce four virtual concerts featuring local musicians impacted by the pandemic that will be livestreamed.

  • What Cheer Writers Club - $4,731 (Providence, RI): Produce a series of virtual programming and virtual events, including: (1) weekly Cocktail Chats such as a Fiction Writers Happy Hour, a Podcasters Happy Hour and Author Talks, featuring authors who have published books during the pandemic; (2) Podcasting 101, a low-cost training held for Rhode Islanders; (3) several virtual “Writing Sprint Days,” in which writers come together online to share goals and write collaboratively; (4) a virtual “NaNoWriMo Finish Line Part,” where writers share projects, celebrate accomplishments, and share resources to support their creative process; and (5) the organization’s Dear Rhode Island program, which connects volunteer pen pals with residents in assisted living facilities.

  • WM Hotel Group LLC dba Hampton Inn & Suites Middletown - $175,000 (Middletown, RI):

  • Launch a series of incentive, discount, and promotion packages for booking a hotel. Woonasquatucket Valley Community Build Inc. dba The Steel Yard - $15,450 (Providence, RI): Create an outdoor market for local artists to sell goods.

HArT Program Direct Support Awards:

- Avon Cinema, $63,180

- AS220, $235,192

- Barrington Arts Alive, $31,988

- Blackstone River Theatre, $27,006

- Blackstone Valley Tourism Board, $159,900

- Colonial Theatre School, Inc., $41,130

- Comedy Connection, $144,643

- Community String Project, $7,312

- Crowne Plaza, $755,867

- Dirt Palace Public Projects, $10,653

- Discover Newport, $249,090

- Dusk, $50,659

- Fairfield Inn Warwick, $175,000

- Festival Ballet Providence, $49,153

- FirstWorks, $174,188

- Gateways to Change, Inc., $73,971

- Girls Rock! RI, $32,143

- Greater Providence Warwick Convention & Visitors Bureau, $249,580

- Greenwich Odeum, $111,924

- Hilton Providence, $910,716

- Island Moving Company, $9,193

- Jane Pickens Theater, $131,957

- Marriott Providence Downtown, $1,000,000

- Newport Art Museum, $170,744

- Newport Film, $59,787

- Newport Music Festival, $133,448

- Newport Playhouse & Cabaret Restaurant, Inc., $147,857

- Providence Performing Arts Center, $600,000

- Renaissance Providence, $928,824

- Rhode Island Philharmonic Orchestra and Music School, $130,651

- Rosemary's Dance Enterprises Inc., $42,384

- Southside Cultural Center, $32,594

- Stadium Theatre Foundation, $227,972

- Strand Entertainment, $246,509

- Ten31 Productions, $17,775

- The Chorus of Westerly, $84,726

- The Contemporary Theater Company, $21,221

- The Parlour Providence, $58,134

- The Preservation Society of Newport County, $600,000

- The Sandra Feinstein-Gamm Theatre, $96,667

- The Steel Yard, $107,387

- The Wilbury Theatre Group, $27,326

- WaterFire Providence, $256,833

Travel & (4).png