The New Richmond Chamber of Commerce is celebrating 52 years of Park Art Fair with help from a $2,000 Joint Effort Marketing (JEM) Grant from the Wisconsin Department of Tourism. As one of the oldest running art fairs in western Wisconsin, the Park Art Fair features more than 125 arts and crafts vendors selling pottery, furniture, jewelry, paintings, ceramics, wood crafts and more. The 2019 Park Art Fair will take place June 7-8 at Mary Park in New Richmond.

"Wisconsin has a vibrant creative economy that can be found in small and large communities across the state," said Tourism Secretary-Designee Sara Meaney. "We are proud to support events like Park Art Fair that not only showcase local and regional artists, but also promote Wisconsin as an arts destination."

The New Richmond Art Park Fair invites visitors to explore art and craft displays in Mary Park. The event also features food trucks and family-friendly activities. With the St. Croix River Bridge now connecting Minnesota and Wisconsin, the New Richmond Chamber hopes to attract a wider audience to the event. Grant funds will go towards outdoor, online, print and broadcast advertising to residents from Minnesota and Wisconsin. The Fair is expected to attract 6,000 attendees, generating an estimated $384,000 in visitor spending in the area.

In 2018, the tourism economy in Wisconsin totaled $21.6 billion, supporting 199,073 jobs in Wisconsin. Visitors generated $1.6 billion in state and local revenue. Business sales in St. Croix County reached $193 million in 2018, supporting 2,037 jobs and $14.6 million in state and local taxes.

"Creative initiatives like the JEM grant can help lift up communities across Wisconsin," said Sen. Patty Schachtner (D-Somerset). "I'm pleased to see New Richmond's artists, businesses and residents benefit from this investment."

In fiscal year 2018, the Department funded 56 JEM projects, awarding a total of more than $1.1 million. Visitor expenditures driven by the marketing from these projects will exceed $74 million. JEM grant funds are available to non-profit organizations for the promotion of Wisconsin tourism events and destinations. The state can fund up to 75% of a project's first-year advertising and marketing costs and provide support for second- and third-year projects with decreasing amounts for funding until projects become self-sustaining. For information on the JEM Program and application materials, visit industry.travelwisconsin.com.