Press Release: Applications Open for $33.25 Million in Grants for Event Venues, Movie Theaters and Live Event Small Businesses

Wisconsin Department of Administration Logo



Tony Evers, Governor

Joel Brennan, Secretary

September 16, 2021
Contact: DOA Communications, (608) 235-2412

Applications Open for $33.25 Million in Grants for Event Venues, Movie Theaters and Live Event Small Businesses

Madison, Wis. – Today, the Wisconsin Department of Administration (DOA) announced it is accepting applications for over $33 million in grants designed to assist event venues, movie theaters and live event small businesses that were impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“There’s no question that movie theaters, event venues, and the small businesses that support them were among the hardest hit last year,” said DOA Secretary Joel Brennan. “These businesses anchor our communities and local economies, and the Evers Administration is once again providing a much-needed shot in the arm to help our main street businesses bounce back.”  

The Event Venue and Live Event Small Business Grant programs will provide funding of up to $200,000 per eligible organization, for a total of $10 million and $12 million respectively, while the Movie Theater grant program will provide funding up to $15,000 per screen, for a total of $11.25 million. The funds are part of the governor's previously announced more than $150 million in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding for Wisconsin's tourism and entertainment industries, including:

  • $10 million for local tourism investment projects;
  • $75 million for lodging grants;
  • $11.25 million for movie theaters;
  • $12 million for live event small businesses;
  • $2.8 million for minor league sports teams;
  • $10 million for event venues;
  • $15 million for destination marketing organizations;
  • $8 million for summer camps;
  • $1 million for the Wisconsin Historical Society to assist in reopening historical sites; and
  • $7.5 million to increase marketing support for Wisconsin's tourism industry.

The grant applications launched today will be administered by DOA, and will remain open until October 15, 2021. Grant recipients will be announced later this fall.

Additional information, including grant program criteria, is available on the program websites:

Applicants are encouraged to submit questions and check the program websites for updates.

For updates on other pandemic-related grant opportunities, sign up for the Badger Bounceback update list.

Find us on Twitter: @WisconsinDOA
Like us on Facebook: Wisconsin DOA
Find more DOA news in our Newsroom.
Having trouble viewing this email? View it as a Web page.