Applications for projects will be approved based on DASCIP budget approval


The Elora & Fergus Destination Animation Project enables experience and product development implementation and was launched in order to create truly unique experiences for both visitors and residents. The Project focuses on enabling feasible projects that align with the DNA of the region; natural setting, heritage and arts and culture and are highly shareable and have high impact on the destination.

The Destination Animation Strategic Co-Investment Project was first launched by The Township of Centre Wellington and Regional Tourism Organization Four (RTO4) in 2017 with $13,000, and resulted in a combined investment of approximately $40,000 in 2017 for a total of 6 unique and highly successful projects. The first year was a success with new events created such as Twilight at Templin and Rappelling and Riverfeast along with enhancements to existing events such as the Bissel Quick Paint Competition. Due to the successful program in 2017 and enthusiasm from the community the program continued in 2018 and 2019.

The 2020 program looks forward to the creation/enhancement of bigger and better events/projects that showcase the Destination DNA.

Submissions must clearly outline how each project will leverage social media sharing and enable social sharing in real time by participants, thereby effectively marketing the destination by virtue of the experience itself. Social media metrics and reporting will be a key component of each final report.

Applications may be for any amount from $500 up to $5,000. The Destination Animation Selection Committee will review and award the proposals.


Eligible organizations include:

  • Festivals and Events
  • BIAs
  • Tourism Enterprises and Businesses (as individual organizations or as a consortium) such as Arts & Culture, Heritage, Agri-Culinary, Sports, Meetings & Conventions, Nature Based Organizations etc.

Applicant business/organization must be a visitor friendly establishment/event located within or in close proximity of Elora and Fergus.

The project must be a net new or enhanced experience and have a minimum 1:1 matching contribution, either in dollars or valued in-kind.

Ineligible requests include:

  • Capital/infrastructure expenses
  • Regular operational expenses
  • Charitable contributions


The online application process requires the following questions be completed:

  1. Provide the business name, address and contact information.
  2. Provide the name of the experience and brief explanation of the event or project.
  3. What are the dates and duration of the Experience?  Please include a timeline of key milestones for the duration of the project.
  4. What are the goals/expectations for the project?
  5. How will success of the project be measured and reported?
  6. What is the budget for the project? Please provide an itemized list of expenses, indicating which expenses will be covered by the applicant (may include staff resources and work-in-kind), and which are funded through the Elora & Fergus Destination Animation Strategic Co-investment Project.
  7. Will there be a charge or admission price for the experience? If so, how much?
  8. Demonstrate capacity (staff time and required skill set) to successfully implement this project.
  9. What type of marketing support will be provided to promote the DNA of Elora & Fergus; natural setting, heritage town and arts and culture?
  10. Is this intended to be an ongoing event or experience?
  11. What are the risks associated with this project (i.e. weather, permitting, minimum attendance requirements…)? Describe contingency plans to mitigate these risks.


The following criteria will be utilized by the Destination Animation Selection Committee to evaluate each application:


  1. Net new or enhanced experience (not pre-existing)
  2. Unique, authentic “nature, heritage, arts and culture” experience that is a good fit for Elora and Fergus
  3. Level of shareability (i.e. inspires social media sharing)
  4. Feasibility
  5. Appeals to both local residents and visitors
  6. Potential to attract out-of-town visitors
  7. Potential of overall economic benefit to the Elora and Fergus area
  8. Potential of overall economic benefit to the downtown core
  9. Level of collaboration with other stakeholders
  10. Marketing/promotional support provided
  11. All necessary permissions for the event/project have been received


Selection Process
All applications go through a process of screening against the eligibility criteria before they are then assessed by the Selection Committee against the selection criteria. The Selection Committee meet to discuss the applications and agree upon a final short-list of applications that will be submitted to RTO4 with a recommendation for: a) approval; b) revision and re-assessment; and c) non-approval.

Due Diligence
Before proceeding to funding, RTO4 will undertake due diligence on the lead organizations. The due diligence assesses if potential applicants meet minimum criteria for:

  • Governance, risk management and internal controls
  • Financial status, procurement and financial management
  • Programmatic capability and readiness to deliver

The partnership funding agreement will be between the lead organization and RTO4. Once the project proposal has been approved, the lead organization will be provided with the funding template containing the standard terms and conditions. The agreement will also include the final agreed project proposal and budget and specify the requirements for obtaining disbursements and progress reporting.


All organizations who receive funding are required to provide a final project evaluation directly to RTO4 no later than 60 days from the conclusion of the event or completion of the project, and include reporting for the following:

  1. Please describe any significant accomplishments, success stories, knowledge gained and/or lessons learned.
  2. Please briefly summarize goals and objectives outlined in your original proposal.
  3. Please report specific results of each of the above-stated goals and objectives (e.g., number of persons served, social media engagement, earned media).
  4. Please describe any significant factors that may have impacted your ability (positively or negatively) to implement the funded project (e.g., challenges or opportunities, such as funding issues or collaborative partnerships).
  5. Will the funded activities be continued? Please provide details.
  6. Do you have feedback on how the Elora & Fergus Destination Animation Strategic Co-investment Project might be more helpful to organizations it funds (e.g., application process, review process, level of funding)?


Applicants are strongly encouraged to discuss their project, questions and eligibility before applying using the contact info below.

The proposal application must be completed in its entirety. Proposals must keep in mind that failure to provide any requested information could affect the Selection Committee’s final decision regarding the project.

Proposals must be submitted online at There will be a first round of proposals with a deadline of April 1st, 2020. Proposals received after the deadline will be reviewed on a rolling basis, however there is no guarantee that resources will be available after the initial round.

Animation Project Online Application

Please feel free to email or call if you have any questions or need clarification.

Deb Dalziel
Tourism & Destination Coordinator
(519) 846-9691 x 380

Leigh Cove, RTO4
Project Manager
(519) 271-7000 x 204