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Posted on: March 14, 2019

Press Release - Green Co., Madison Co., and Orange Co. Tourism Receive a $10,000 Grant

Today, Greene, Madison, and Orange County Tourism departments announced that they have received a collective grant in the amount of $10,000 from the Virginia Tourism Corporation (VTC) “50 Years of Love” grant fund. “50 Years of Love” is part of VTC’s efforts to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Virginia is for Lovers tourism slogan, which was created in 1969 by Richmond-based advertising agency Martin & Woltz.

The Greene County, Madison County, and Orange County Tourism departments are partners in celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the “Virginia is for Lovers” tourism slogan.  The three counties are collaborating with a “50 Ways to Fall in Love with the Foothills” campaign to share the special tourism opportunities within our region of Virginia.  The campaign kicks off on August 31th and ends October 19th and will highlight 13 different festivals and events in the foothills.  Local destinations, restaurants, wineries, breweries, and retail shops will be partnering by offering a variety of specials or promotions to spotlight the region and provide unique dining & shopping opportunities for both tourists and residents.  This grant will boost the local economies through the promotion of tourism within our three localities.

“Virginia is for Lovers is one of the most iconic tourism slogans in the world, and we are thrilled to be celebrating “50 years of Love” with partners from around the Commonwealth in 2019,” said Rita McClenny, president and CEO of Virginia Tourism Corporation. “This grant program provides an engaging opportunity for destinations across the state to showcase what makes a vacation in Virginia so special and helps to show travelers why Virginia is for Lovers still rings true 50 years later.”

Tracey Gardner, Madison County Economic Development and Tourism Director expressed, “Madison County is excited about this new collaboration and opportunity recognizing that our visitors don’t care about County lines. What a great way to celebrate this milestone year for Virginia Tourism!”

“The "Virginia is for Lovers" slogan proves to be as vibrant today as it did when it was introduced 50 years ago.  There's no better way to celebrate this milestone than to fall in love with Virginia's foothills all over again by experiencing small town charm.  We're excited to share our beautiful outdoors along with shopping, wineries, pottery, history, and unique lodging,” noted Alan Yost, Greene County Economic Development and Tourism Director.

“The foothills region has so many unique adventures and experiences to share with visitors,” said Lori Landes-Carter, Orange County Tourism Director. “Orange County Tourism is excited to partner with Greene and Madison County as a region to celebrate all the things we love about Virginia and the “foothills” during the “50 Years of Love” anniversary. We are honored to be selected to celebrate alongside Virginia Tourism in 2019! We look forward to showing everyone the “The Fifty Ways to Fall in Love with the Foothills” this fall, so stay tuned…” 

In total, VTC awarded $390,000 to 39 tourism marketing programs across the Commonwealth to help increase visitation and revenue. Each grant recipient received a $10,000 grant for its “50 Years of Love” project, with the requirement of engaging 10 or more tourism partners in order to receive grant funding.

The Virginia Tourism Corporation is the state agency responsible for marketing Virginia to visitors and promoting the “Virginia is for Lovers” brand, which is celebrating 50 years in 2019. Tourism is an instant revenue generator in Virginia. In 2017, visitors spent $25 billion, which supported 232,000 jobs and contributed $1.73 billion in state and local taxes.

About Virginia is for Lovers
Fifty years after its creation, Virginia is for Lovers continues to be one of the most recognizable and iconic tourism slogans of all time. Virginia is for Lovers was inducted into the Madison Avenue Advertising Walk of Fame on Sept. 21, 2009. The slogan was included in the Advertising Icon Museum alongside fellow 2009 inductees, the AOL Running Man, the Budweiser Clydesdales and State Farm’s slogan, Like a Good Neighbor, State Farm is There. This recognition came on the heels of tapping Virginia is for Lovers as one of the top 10 tourism marketing campaigns of all time. Today, a new generation is discovering love for Virginia’s mountains, beaches, history, theme parks, vibrant cities, outdoor activities, sports and hospitality.

For more information about 50 Years of Love, please visit

For more information, contact:
Tracey Gardner, Madison County Economic Development and Tourism Director
(540) 948-7500 ext.169

Lori Landes-Carter, Orange County Tourism Director
(540) 920-9331
For more information and to plan your next vacation in Virginia, please visit

View the Official Press Release
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