Tourism Authority Gives $930,500 In Funding

May 8, 2014

The Bermuda Tourism Authority [BTA] has extended $930,500 in funding for various concepts, with the bulk of it — $630,000 — going to sporting related events. Overall, the average amount provided was $30,016, with the highest at $150,000, the lowest at $4,000, while the median was $15,000.

In a statement posted on their website, the BTA said: “The experiences identified for investment demonstrated alignment with the Bermuda National Tourism Plan objectives, with emphasis in the areas of sports, arts and culture, natural resources and marketing/PR.

“The BTA looks forward to the contribution that these experiences will provide in enhancing and increasing Bermuda’s tourism product offerings.”

The list of funding recipients is below:

Bermuda International Invitational Race WeekMay 3-9, 2014
Multi-class sailing regatta
Saracens -The Big GameJune 2-8, 2014
Professional rugby team tour to Bermuda
Light Tackle tournamentJune 15-19, 2014
International light tackle fishing tournament
Bermuda Flyfish InvitationalJune 24-28, 2014
Open water fly-fishing tournament
Bermuda BillfishJune 30 – July 20, 2014
Series of four sport fishing tournaments with inclusive media buy
Beach TennisAug 27-28, 2014
Beach tennis tournament on Horseshoe Bay
Bermuda InvitationalSept 12-14, 2014
Celebrity golf tournament
Around the Sound SwimOct 12, 2014
Harrington Sound swim tournament
CAIS Boys Soccer TournamentOct 15-19, 2014
Canadian Association of independent Schools: 24 team soccer tournament
RBYC Argo CupOct 20 – 26, 2014
Sailing event on the world match racing tour
Newport to BermudaJune 20 – 28, 2014
Bi-annual open ocean sailing race
Queen of Bermuda women’s triathlonNov 7-9, 2014
All women’s triathlon
World Rugby ClassicNov 8-15, 2014
8 team international rugby tournament
Bermuda Squash ChallengeNov 13-15, 2014
Tri-nation amateur squash tournament
Goslings InvitationalNov 30-Dec 4, 2014
Golf tournament
Bermuda Regional BridgeJan 24-30, 2015
American Bridge League annual regional tournament
Bermuda Open VolleyballApr 3-5, 2015
International team tournament
Annual Swim MeetApr 15, 2015
International masters swim meet at National Sports Center
Open BIC NA ChampionshipsApr 24-27, 2015
North American open Bic sailing championships
Bermuda Golf AssociationALL YEAR
Season long schedule of golf events
St George’s Historical ReenactmentsALL YEAR
The historical reenactments in St. Georges Square
Harbour NightsSEASONAL
Weekly street festival with local entertainment and vendors
Rockfire BermudaSEASONAL
Performance art, fire dancers & production
City Fashion FestivalJuly 7-12, 2014
High end fashion festival with local and overseas fashion designers
1814 Historical EventsAug 1-16, 2014
Reenactment of Bermuda’s connection to the 1814 historical events in America
Peace EventsSept 19-20, 2014
International Peace day concert featuring overseas and local artists
Frog and Onion Oktober FestOct 1-4, 2014
Celebration of Oktoberfest
PanHellenic ExperienceApr 7-10, 2015
Sorority and fraternity experience to take place in Bermuda
Gemini Dream WeekendMay 30- June 1, 2014
Land and sea-based themed experience
Chewstick LoungeALL YEAR
Showcases featuring some of Bermuda’s best local entertainers
Little Island Big AdventureALL YEAR
Eco/historical tours
Caitlin End-to-EndMay 2, 2014/15
Charitable island long walk, cycle, and swimming event
UberVida Whole Day DreamingSEASONAL
All day adventure to Bermuda’s north barrier reef
Summer JamJune 13-15, 2014
Music entertainment event featuring international artists on the Queen’s Birthday holiday
Cup Match Beach FestJuly 30-31, 2014
Cup Match experience at Horseshoe Bay Beach
Somerset Cricket ClubJuly 31 – Aug 1, 2014
Host of annual 2-day Cup Match Classic
Bermuda Dog ShowOct 18-19, 2014
All breed kennel club of Bermuda’s championship show
Fall Salsa FeteNov 7-10, 2014
Salsa event featuring International salsa performances
St Peters ChurchALL YEAR
Tours of the oldest Anglican church in the western hemisphere
Coconut RocketsALL YEAR
Fly board experience at Black Bay Somerset
Horse Trail RidesALL YEAR
Horse trail rides along the South Shore
Spirit of BermudaALL YEAR
Special events and experiences featuring the iconic Bermuda Sloop
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Comments (43)

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  1. Fruity says:

    This is really nice but it would’ve been also nice to see more help toward medical, abuse prevention, child assistance centers.

    • Mike Hind says:

      From the Tourism Authority?

      What does any of that have to do with Tourism?

      • JUNK YARD DOG says:

        So our VISITORS can have “FUN IN THE SUN” it’s an Entertainment Budget Michael !

        If you are not having fun,then you are not having fun.

        Our visitors need to return home and tell their friends that they had a good time in Bermuda …—…

        • Mike Hind says:

          I have no idea what this has to do with my post… or the post above.

          Care to elaborate?

          Seriously, I honestly can’t even begin to fathom what you mean by your post.

  2. Rick Olson says:

    Events for tourists or locals ?

    • KTB says:

      @ Frank I’m confused too, I would like to know how a fashion show is going to improve/enhance our tourism product. Why are we (the taxpayer) paying twice for this fashion extravaganza when it’s being funded by the Coporation of Hamilton? They clearly don’t need any financial help from the BTA and yet they shower them with cash!? I would like to see a full list of the applicants who were denied funding, I’m sure it would make for some very interesting reading.

      • Mike Hind says:

        You could call the BTA and ask…

        Just a thought.

    • PBanks says:

      Interesting question, perhaps. One could ask how many visitors the Kennel Club show draws in, for example.

  3. frank says:

    the question is how much did each group get and how many tourist is each group going to bring in another waste of taxpayers money

  4. Rayki Emery says:

    This doesn’t impress me at all.

    90 percent of these events already existed before the BTA was founded.

    This is nothing new, just a smoke screen to make it look as if they are doing something legitimate with our money.

    Do something original. Albert Einstien Said it the best when he said “insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results”

    Also. FIRST!

    • Mike Hind says:

      So… wait.

      Should they have stopped funding these events? Are these events not legitimate?

      How is this a smoke screen?

      Why does it matter that these events were already in existence?

      • Rayki Emery says:

        I’m saying they where given an annual budget of 26.1 million dollars.

        I’m saying funding events that already existed (minus coconut rockets, rockfire, chew, the anglican church to be clear) isn’t innovative.

        I’m saying that my niece would have done a better job marketing Bermuda. And I mean that as sincerely as possible.

        I’m saying that this is a smoke screen. Its screams “look we’re doing something with your money”, whilst covering up the long standing issues relating to the BTA.

        I also say that this is legitimately some bulls***. Anyone with a secondary school education level could have come up with something more original. Even an attempt at something more original would have been appreciated.

        Which isn’t saying that they havant done anything original.
        Its saying show us that you are worth all this effin money the tax payers are paying.

        Doing the same things over and over and expecting different results is inanity.

        I don’t know how else to say it to better suit your comprehension.

        • Mike Hind says:

          How can the BTA have long-standing problems?

          And “Legitimately some bulls***. Anyone with a secondary school education level could have come up with something more original.”? More original that what?

          Than funding existing programs and events? That’s ALL this is. That’s what this story is about.

          I mean… you say “funding events that already existed” and then, backpedal and list things that ARE ok… it’s just weird. You say “Show us that you are worth all this effin money…” but you’re basing it on this one thing. One story doesn’t mean they haven’t “shown us” other stuff. Just because they funded these doesn’t mean that they haven’t done other stuff.

          And I think they’re doing these “same things over and over” because they’re expecting the SAME results. I.E. These things have been successful and they want them to continue.

          Your last sentence, I’ll ignore, as it’s just petulant sniping. There’s no need to lash out like that.

          • street wise says:

            The most important thing that BTA is supposed to be doing is attracting more air visitors to the Island. I fail to see how many of these events will actually give us a positive ROI on our investment in regard to the additional number of visitors they attract here. Most of these events are targeted toward locals. Or have enough funding to begin with. So the BTA should not be funding local events, the Government should be doing that. IMHO of course.

  5. somuchless says:

    I don’t see any small businesses listed. Bunch of crock.

    • Rayki Emery says:

      Coconut Rockets is as small of a small business as you’ll get.

      Mr. Swan (owner) has about eight or nine BERMUDIAN Staff. One of them Mr. Callon Burns is ranked internationally and is one of the worlds best up and coming fly boarders.

      I’m happy to see him and his staff get the funding that they deserve.

    • Mike Hind says:

      Huh? Most of these are put on by small Bermudian businesses!

    • KTB says:

      I agree, The more I read this list the more I realize with a few exceptions (Chewstick, etc) the BTA/Government is funding events who already have the financial means to fully fund their events. I mean really, Newport to Bermuda, World Rugby Classic, RBYC Argo Cup!? I can’t…

      • Sandgrownan says:

        Speaking from a position of ignorance

        • KTB says:

          Please explain in detail how my comment is ignorant? Better yet since you apparently have a wealth of knowledge on this topic maybe you can share with us “ignorant” folks the reason for giving additional funding to the events I mentioned in my comments as well as the amount of money each was given. Thanks Sandman, I’ll wait……

          • Sandgrownan says:

            Good, are you sitting comfortably. The event i was/am involved in, brought around 60 people to Bermuda for approximately 300 or so bed nights. It runs on a very tight budget and without BTA support, would have not broken even. So, to claim events have the ability to fully self fund is ignorant.

          • kj says:

            I Sandman is referring to your statement “have the financial means to fully fund their events”. Which would suggest that actually you are the one with the wealth of knowledge and that you have financials to back up that statement with a breakdown of the expenses and revenues for the entire event. Understanding the operations and logistics and the dollar cost attributed to it all. So given that you have that information, then I guess your comment would be fair to say, otherwise if you do not, then you operating in ignorance would be pretty much spot on.

          • kj says:

            I think*

  6. Sandgrownan says:

    As the organiser of one of the events listed, I had to make a detailed application regarding the Bermuda “experience”, what was Bermudian about it, what visibility and publicity would be cretaed for Bermuda, publish a budget on how the funding would be spent if awarded and evaluate number of visitors (room-nights) were a direct result of the event and post event, submit a report about the success of the event.

    So entirely legitimate, focussed and appropriate process for tourism funding to be distributed.

    To answer the comments above…yes, it was for tourists, yes, we are a small business, yes we did bring visitors in as a direct result of the event.

  7. Notsofast says:

    If you want tourists then Bermuda must appear to be a vibrant community. Funding for these various groups is important for their survival.

    The Chewstick Foundation is a great example of a local charity endeavor that could attract tourists. Their work in the community is important.

  8. Rockfish#1 and#2 says:

    This headline is misleading.

    Should read. Bermuda Government gives $930.500 in Funding.

    The Bermuda Tourism Authority has no money to ‘give’ anyone, it relies on the taxpayer.

    Unfortunately, we are not allowed to know what they cost us. Tranparency anyone?

    • godson says:

      Rockfish, it seems as if govt gave BTA a blank check..I would like to ask…why is BTA “extending” funding for sporting events? What is Min of Sports funding? What will the BTA be responsible for? Just the promotion of the activities(events)? Which means more $$$$….and they tell us “there is no money in the kitty”… Smdh

      • Sandgrownan says:

        Possibly because they attract visitors?

  9. UpsetwithVerdict says:

    Couldn’t a portion of this went to educational bursaries! this is BS!!!! Profits over people Government for sure! People wake up!

  10. brigadooner says:

    Is there a report that shows event by event funding amounts? Would be interesting to see what events are being prioritized.

    • Sandgrownan says:

      They are funded based on expected #’s of tourists being brought to Bermuda for the experience.

      • Lick My Chicken says:

        the question brigadooner is asking is how much did each company get.

        • Sandgrownan says:

          Why does he care?

          • somuchless says:

            Reading this, to see what each winner got is a legit question.

    • Evie says:

      Question where r $$$ amounts ???? Things that make u say mmmmmmh SMDH

  11. Scotty says:

    Rockfish you are absolutely correct, it is taxpayers money they are distributing. This BTA makes me laugh all of these people employed, and we don’t even know the COO’s salary, to distribute funds. Any government office could do that. To think David Dodwell thought that the DOT was over staffed. There needs to be a financial calculation as to the cost of this BTA to date, and they are still employing staff. I wonder how many of the Tourism employees are Tourism educated? How many Bermuda College graduates who went on to further their Tourism or Business qualifications are on that Board? I know Paul Telford did and rightly so he should represent his country.

    • Starting Point says:

      I do not think they are portraying that it is not taxpayer money. I believe the point is that (in theory) the government has no say in what is funded but that professionals in the industry now control how the money is allocated etc.

      Now fans of the previous administration will of course say that government tells the BTA what to fund and how etc. because they come from a system where government interference was the standard operating procedure.

      I would urge folks to think, IF they planned the system themselves, who would they want making decisions on a tourism grant? Tourism professionals or government (regardless of what party is in power).

  12. Oracle says:

    I am afraid many of the responders to this article just do not get it. These events bring in tourists who stay in hotels, spend money in resaurants etc. These people are spending money which helps keep our economy going. If they stop coming then we will have more unemployment. Most of these events really make an impact. I believe there was a study done on the economic impact of the Newport Bermuda Race two years ago. I believe the grant for this event is around $150,000. This is money well spent since the figure for economoc impact was in the millions for one week. Pretty good return on ivestment if you ask me. The people who work on this event are volunteers who work very hard to keep it vibrant and the money is used to publicize the event and cover expenses. The numbers expected in 2014, even with econiomic woes, are still up there with the good years. If all events can do this then it is money well spent. Remember this is money being used to attract tourists which we need badly.

    • kj says:

      Oracle, Oracle Oracle…..don’t you see they don’t wana get it!!! It’s quite sad that it only takes a half brain to realize how much of an economical impact an event such as the Newport Race brings….but why use analytical skills when its easier to sit back and criticize and complain! I agree, these are initiatives that provide great return on investment and is not “throwing” money away in the least!

  13. Somebody's momma says:

    I went to the presentation by the BTA and during that presentation they advised that the maximum amount that you could receive was $75,000. Very interesting that 2 organizations received twice that amount. An organization that draws more tourist here and is a major event received so much less.

    • kj says:

      Do you have an event that you can suggest to the BTA that could potentially bring in even a quarter of the money that any of the 2 organizations that your referring to can?
      Just wondering…..

  14. Scotty says:

    KJ I find it difficult to accept your condescending and uniformed remarks. How many of these BTA employees are Tourism trained? Do your homework before you open your mouth. The best years in tourism were the late 1980′s and early 90′s. 600,000 visitors to be exact. In fact other countries were aghast that we could accommodate 10 visitors to 1 resident and not destroy the infrastructure. In addition, these were predominantly resident visitors not cruise ship visitors. How can you justify this type of tourism business to the Newport to Bermuda Race. We need to get out and market to our best catchment areas. Baring in mind today that we want to decrease the numbers and increase their spending power. My comment was that the BTA was marketed to us as a pared down efficient and effective Board. This has proven to be erroneous to date, as they continue to empire build with many of the people who were employed by, or associated with the old DOT. I am totally aware of the multiplier effect of events such as the Newport Race. Anyone who has studied the tourism product is aware the this industry is made up predominantly of small businesses. So Sir, before you open your mouth and allow your belly to rumble, many of us commentators actually, DO GET IT! It is not about party politics it is about saving an industry and its employees.