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Press Release: Barter Theatre Receives Virginia Tourism Corporation Grant for Tourism Marketing

By May 17, 2022No Comments


Barter Theatre Receives Virginia Tourism Corporation Grant for Tourism Marketing

Governor Glenn Youngkin announced that Virginia Tourism Corporation (VTC) awarded more than $2.7 million for 259 local and regional tourism marketing programs across the state to help increase visitation and revenue for Virginia’s localities through tourism. 

Barter Theatre received a $20,000 grant for its Stay and Play in Abingdon Campaign. Barter Theatre partnered with The Martha Washington Inn and Spa, and Spot of Color to supply $20,000 in matching funds for the project. The Stay and Play in Abingdon Campaign aims to encourage visitors to spend an extended time in Abingdon by highlighting all of the local activities available to them. Additionally the grant will provide funds to make improvements to Barter Theatre’s website to make it easy for visitors to plan to attend more than one production during their visit. 

Barter Theatre’s Managing Director Ross Egan said: “Barter Theatre is an important driver of the Abingdon economy. A recent economic impact study shows that for every one dollar spent by Barter, $3.99 is injected into the local economy. Projects like Stay and Play in Abingdon, are important to all businesses in Abingdon.”

“These grant funds provide an important opportunity for communities across the Commonwealth to accelerate recovery efforts and continue with their best-in-class marketing initiatives to attract new travelers,” said Rita McClenny, president and CEO of Virginia Tourism. “Increased visitation translates directly into revenue generation, underscoring tourism’s important role in stimulating economic growth and expansion”

The VTC Marketing Leverage Program is designed to increase visitor spending by leveraging limited marketing dollars, stimulating new tourism marketing through partnerships, and extending the “Virginia is for Lovers” brand.  A minimum of three Virginia entities must partner financially to apply for a grant.  Partners may consist of Virginia cities, towns, counties, convention and visitors bureaus, chambers of commerce, other local or regional destination marketing organizations, private businesses, museums, attractions, cultural events, and other tourism-related businesses.  

About Barter Theatre

Barter Theatre, the nation’s longest running professional theatre, is located in Abingdon, Virginia. The theatre opened in 1933 during the Great Depression. Founder Robert Porterfield offered patrons admission to the theatre by bartering food and livestock. Barter Theatre was designated as the State Theatre of Virginia in 1946. It exists today as one of the last year-round professional resident repertory theaters remaining in the United States.  Barter Theatre is funded in part by The Virginia Commission for the Arts and The National Endowment for the Arts. 

About Virginia Tourism Corporation
Virginia is for Lovers is one of the most iconic and recognizable travel brands in the world. Using that powerful brand equity, Virginia Tourism Corporation (VTC) is charged with promoting the Commonwealth as a premier travel destination by showcasing all there is to love in a Virginia vacation. The dollars spent by travelers fuel the economy, provide jobs for Virginians, and improve communities across the state. Simply put, tourism helps make Virginia a great place to live, work, and vacation. Learn more at


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