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Chamber nets funds from Travel Oregon

Tourism — Program awards organizations money raised through sales of license plates

The Chehalem Valley Chamber of Commerce is among a group of wine country organizations that will receive funds generated from sales of Oregon Wine Country license plates and dispersed through a matching grant program to aid the local economy.

The Oregon Tourism Commission, also known as Travel Oregon, aims with its Oregon Wine Country Plates Matching Grants Program to “advance wine and culinary tourism projects that improve local economies and communities by enhancing, expanding and promoting Oregon’s travel and tourism industry,” according to a press release.

The CVCC received $12,500 from Travel Oregon and the chamber will match that amount, executive director Sheryl Kelsh said.

The chamber received the funds “for development of the Oregon Wine Education Center Marketing and Curriculum Development project that will provide winery-specific trainings and educational opportunities for the industry,” a press release said.

Other local receiving organizations include Travel Yamhill Valley for the publication of the Travel Yamhill Valley Wine & Culinary Guide and the Willamette Valley Wineries Association for creating the Willamette Valley Barrel Auction branded materials for an event bringing high-end buyers to the local area for a pinot noir auction.

“Oregon is known for its incredible wine and culinary scene,” Travel Oregon CEO Todd Davidson said. “The awarded projects will enhance and highlight the state’s bounty to visitors and locals, while helping to strengthen local economies and improve communities throughout the state.”

The license plate funding program was signed by the Legislature in 2011 as a way to promote wine and food-related tourism around the state. Sales of the license plates enable Travel Oregon to make more than $230,000 in grants available, ranging in amount from $2,500 to $40,000.

For more information, visit www.traveloregon. com.


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