Skip to Main Content

Matching Funds



Mini Match Funds Program
Guidelines & Information

The “VisitErie Tourism Matching Funds for Cooperative Marketing” program has been developed to increase the economic impact of tourism in Erie County, Pennsylvania. 

Guidelines & Information

Partners in good standing are eligible to apply for dollars from VisitErie to be used as a match fund for VisitErie partner cooperative advertising initiatives. The program goals are to encourage cooperative programs between local tourism-related businesses that will nurture relationships and broaden the message to potential visitors, attract tourists and visitors from outside Erie County and encourage overnight stays and day trips. Awards are granted on the basis of merit as determined by the established criteria.

Eligible Applicants:

  1. Applicants must be a Business ($250), Corporate ($1,000) or Executive ($5,000) level partner of VisitErie.
  2. In addition to VisitErie, the proposed program must involve no less than two (2) participants (current VisitErie partners) directly related to the travel industry.


VisitErie Matching Funds Works!


Program: VIP Wine Package, Summer 2018

Promoting and selling a VIP tasting package along with a Visit Visa discount booklet to attract visitors to Wine Country for samplings, discount purchases and encouraging overnight stays. Primarily through social media generating $1050 packages sold.

“Having been the recipients of the VisitErie Matching Funds for the past couple of years, Lake Erie Wine Country has been able to develop a VIP Package program which highlights the local wineries in our region. The Matching funds have given us the opportunity to advertise in different markets than in the past and draw awareness which we might not otherwise have been able to achieve. The sales have been supported with customer traffic which then supports the businesses in the areas in which the wineries are located. It's been a win/win for our Trail as well as the local communities.” Nicki Kane, 21 Brix, Jenny Sholtis, Penn Shore Winery – Lake Erie Wine Country Marketing Committee 

 Program: Mazza Instant Getaway, Spring 2017

Promoting a comprehensive getaway package including wine, food and overnight stays in Erie County. The Facebook, Pandora, Pittsburgh Magazine and advertising campaign generated 30,809 clicks to the Mazza getaway pages.

“VisitErie’s matching funds program has been instrumental in helping Mazza expand reach and stretch marketing dollars. The program’s focus on cooperation with other attractions and hotels has helped pave the way for us to collaborate with these partners beyond the grant - providing additional benefits for all involved.” Mario Mazza, Mazza Vineyards, General Manager

Program: Lake Erie Ale Trail Travel Package, Spring 2017
Promoting overnight hotel packages with LEAT during American Craft Beer Week in April and May 2017 targeting craft beer enthusiasts in the Pittsburgh metro market with Pandora, Facebook and print advertising.

"With the help of VisitErie and their Matching Funds Program, the Lake Erie Ale Trail has been able to grow & expose itself to outside markets that would never have been possible without them."  Chris Sirianni, LEAT President, Brewerie at Union Station, President/G.M.

Program: Orchestrate Erie, Winter 2016

Promoting two separate concerts, Casablanca and Emperor Concerto, and an overnight package in February and March 2017 targeting the tristate area and Philharmonic enthusiasts with a multimedia approach.

 “I can’t stress enough the positive value and impact of the Matching Funds program sponsored by VisitErie.  By having the ability to advertise in Pittsburgh, Cleveland and the surrounding counties, we were able to bring a significant amount of first-time ticket buyers into the city, showcasing Erie's world-class talent and historical concert hall.”  
Steve Weiser, Erie Philharmonic

Program: Great Lakes Beach Glass & Coastal Arts Festival, Spring 2016
Promoting the Beach Glass & Coastal Arts Festival in the form of an overnight stay package with Sheraton Hotel targeting Buffalo, Cleveland, Pittsburgh Southern Ontario, Niagara Falls, Ashtabula, multimedia approach.

“The matching funds grant awarded by VisitErie made a noticeable difference with the outcome of our event. We saw an increase in the gate by almost 70% from the previous festival and know that a large part of our guests were from the out of town market areas that we targeted. Our grant partners were equally as pleased due to the positive outcome it had with all of our businesses.”  
Jennifer Reed, Relish Inc.

Partner Spotlight


UPMC Hamot - See What Makes Us Different

UPMC Hamot is a 423-bed hospital in Erie, PA, offering a full complement of inpatient and outpatient services, and serves as a regional referral hub and Level II Trauma Center.

Learn More

millcreek mall

Millcreek Mall

A destination for shopping, dining and entertainment.
Experience it all!

Learn More

spotlgiht the cove

The Cove Bay-Side Restaurant & Tavern

Join us today! The Cove Bay-Side Restaurant & Tavern is sure to give you an unforgettable and care-free dining experience. Enjoy a nautical atmosphere with a beautiful view of Presque Isle Bay.

Learn More

erie reginal chambers

Erie Regional Chamber and Growth Partnership

The Erie Regional Chamber is leading Erie’s economic evolution through awareness, advocacy, and access to the people, education, and information integral to elevating regional success and economic growth. Become a member today and join us in championing a vibrant and sustainable regional economy.

Learn More

1 v3

Creation Station

The Creation Station is an unique arts and crafts studio where kids can create and have fun!
Book your birthday party, register for a ladies night out or stop in during open Craft days and choose a project from the project board.

Learn More

ad port farms

Holidays at Port Farms

Experience the holidays at Port Farms November 26th through December 23rd. The farm features horse-drawn carriage & sleigh rides, Santa's Workshop with holiday activities, surprise visits from Santa, live music, pick your own Christmas trees, holiday decor, and more. The farm will be open Wednesday - Sunday. Create lasting memories with your family and friends at Port Farms!

Learn More

partner mazza vineyards

Mazza Vineyards and the South Shore Wine Company

Local wine is great for holiday entertaining, plus it makes a great gift! Stop by to try (and pick up) award-winning wines at Mazza Vineyards and the historic South Shore Wine Company, both located in North East, PA.

Learn More

spotlight Erei Airport

Direct Daily Flights to Charlotte, Chicago, and Washington, D.C.

Erie International Airport is serviced by American Airlines and United Airlines with daily flights to Charlotte, Chicago, and Washington D.C. with connecting flights to the east coast, west coast, and international destinations. Book your flight today at or

Learn More

dobbins landing

Dobbins Landing

Located on the southeast shore of Lake Erie, the Port of Erie has been promoting industrial, commercial, and recreational opportunities on the waters of Lake Erie since 1959.

Learn More

u pick 6 spotlight

U Pick 6 Craft Beer Pubs & Restaurants

Erie’s own local craft beer pubs are a must-visit! With 4 great locations, just pick one that’s convenient for you! A casual, family friendly dining experience with something for everyone! To view our menu, check out what’s on tap, or get to directions to our pubs, learn more now!”

Learn More

bayfront grille

Outdoor Dining at the Bayfront Grille

The Bayfront Grille Restaurant at the Sheraton Erie Bayfront Hotel is excited to announce that our Bayside Patio is open for Lunch and Dinner. Please check Open Table for reservations or contact the restaurant directly at 814-454-2005.

Learn More

the cork

The Cork 1794

The Cork 1794 is the perfect spot for a date night or special occasion! Indoor and outside seating available with amazing food.

Learn More