Cultural Tourism Funding Opportunities

AIANTA collects funding opportunities that may be of interest to Indigenous or Native American tourism & hospitality enterprises looking to grow their tourism, culture, heritage, arts, agritourism or other culture and heritage programming.

Special Notice

Eighth Generation, the first Native-owned company to offer wool blankets, has launched its Third Wool Blanket Design Contest.

With nearly $30K in prizes over three prize categories, this is Eight Generations’ Biggest Contest ever.

Categories include: Warrior Blanket (to honor the people who sacrifice for their way of life); Elder Blanket (to honor those who laid the groundwork for future generations); and People’s Choice Blanket (designed by a community-engaged artist).

Deadline to Apply: July 6, 2021

Open Funding Opportunities

  • The National Forest Foundation Matching Awards Program provides funding for on-the-ground, results-oriented projects designed to enhance forest health and outdoor experiences in national forests and grasslands.
    Deadline: 6/9/21
    Tourism Tip: This opportunity can help fund outdoor-based tourism attractions.
  • The National Endowment for the Arts is accepting applications for grants that support projects that use the arts to unite and heal in response to current events; celebrate creativity and cultural heritage; invite mutual respect for differing beliefs and values; and enrich humanity.
    Deadline: 6/16/21
    Tourism Tip: This opportunity is great for funding cultural arts projects and language preservation programs.
  • The Aaron Copland Fund for Music is now accepting applications for the 2021 Performance Program. This program works to support performing and presenting organizations whose artistic excellence encourages and improves public knowledge and appreciation of serious contemporary American music.
    Deadline: 6/30/21
    Tourism Tip: This fund can help support projects providing public knowledge of cultural and Indigenous music.
  • The Wildhorse Foundation makes grants to eligible organizations in their homeland area, which includes Morrow, Umatilla, Union, and Wallowa counties in Oregon and Benton, Columbia, and Walla Walla counties in Washington, along with Native American organizations in the greater Pacific Northwest.
    Deadline: 7/1/21
    Tourism Tip: This opportunity is perfect for funding arts, cultural activities and educational projects at your tourism enterprises.
  • New Earth Foundation invites applications for innovative projects with the potential to enhance life on the planet and brighten the future, furthering peace.
    Deadline: 7/1/21
    Tourism Tip: This opportunity can help support educational innovations that prepare youth to become the socially responsible leaders of the future and strategies that offer economic improvement and opportunities.
  • The Office of Indian Energy and Economic Development (OIED), through its Native American Business Development Institute (NABDI) grant, is soliciting proposals from tribes for technical assistance funding to hire consultants to perform feasibility studies of economic development opportunities.
    Deadline: 7/2/21
    Tourism Tip: Use this opportunity to hire a consultant to develop a tourism enterprise to help your community’s economy.
  • The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) is requesting applications for the 2021 Regional Food System Partnerships (RFSP) grant program.
    Deadline: 7/6/21
    Tourism Tip: Use this grant to help fund your agritourism business.
  • The USDA Rural Development’s Business & Industry (B&I) CARES Act Program is making available up to $1 billion in loan guarantees to help rural agriculture businesses meet their working capital needs.
    Deadline: 9/15/21
    Tourism Tip: This opportunity can help any rural agritourism business struggling to meet working capital needs.
  • The National Historic Publications & Records Commission NHPRC is accepting applications to fund projects that will significantly improve online public discovery and use of historical records collections. The Commission encourages projects centered on collections of America’s early legal records, such as the records of colonial, territorial, county, and early statehood and tribal proceedings that document the evolution of the nation’s legal history.
    Deadline: 10/6/21
    Tourism Tip: This fund can help support document historical document findings for your museum or cultural center.

Contests & Awards

  • The Standing Bear Prize for Courage is a project of the Chief Standing Bear Project Inc.  The Purpose of the Corporation is to promote the life and civil rights legacy of Chief Standing Bear, a Native American of the Ponca Tribe, by presenting public discussion groups, forums, lectures and other events, and annually recognizing with a cash award a person who exemplifies courage in the spirit of Standing Bear.
    Deadline: July 12, 2021

Successful Cultural Tourism Funding

For examples of Native American, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian tourism, arts and cultural heritage programs that have received funding, please view our Successful Cultural Tourism Awards document now.

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More Cultural Tourism Funding Resources

The following list of resources may provide funding support for cultural heritage tourism programming. The list includes federal grants, which are highly competitive and can often take several weeks, months and even years to build a strong proposal and compile the necessary information to apply.

 

Grants.gov

Grants.gov provides a unified site for interaction between grant applicants and the U.S. federal agencies that manage grant funds. The site allows applicants to search for funds by agency.

Federal Agencies

U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)
www.hud.gov/program_offices/public_indian_housing/ih

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)

National Endowment for the Arts (NEA)

National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH)

Institute of Museum and Library Sciences (IMLS)

U.S. Department of Transportation
www.transportation.gov/livability/grants-programs

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

State Tourism, Arts & Economic Development Agencies

Arts.gov State and Regional Arts Councils
arts.gov/partners/state-regional

California Arts Council
arts.ca.gov/grants

California Governor’s Office of Business & Economic Development
business.ca.gov

Montana Tourism Office
marketmt.com

  • Indian Country Region/Tribal
  • Tourism Tribal Business Planning Grant
  • Indian Equity Fund

New Mexico Tourism Office
newmexico.org/industry/work-together/grants/

  • Tourism Development Grant Program
  • Clean & Beautiful Cooperative
  • Marketing Grant Program

 

Additional Resources

Community Foundations
www.cof.org/community-foundation-locator

The Council on Foundations, founded in 1949, is a nonprofit leadership association of grantmaking foundations and corporations. Use their search tool to find local funding resources.

The Grantsmanship Center
www.tgci.com

The Grantsmanship Center offers training, publications and consulting to help organizations find funding. The Center provides free access to its Funding State-by-State database listing each state’s top grantmaking foundations, community foundations, corporate giving programs and State website homepages.

Candid (formerly the Foundation Center and GuideStar)
candid.org/

Candid is an online source for grants available through private foundations, corporate foundations, and other nonprofits that accept grant proposals. It also provides research on nonprofits and guides, like the 990 Finder.

 

A Warm Thank You to Our Partners

Bureau of Indian Affairs

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Native American Agriculture Fund

Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail

Lewis & Clark National Historic Trail

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AIANTA plays a critical role in supporting the National Travel and Tourism Strategy to bring more visitors to the United States, especially in our participation at trade shows internationally and domestically, to promote tourism in Indian Country.

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