2023 Strategic Investment Fund Wrap Up 

The Oregon Coast Visitors Association (OCVA)’s annual Strategic Investment Fund (SIF) is an annual program that allows us to support our coastal tourism partners by responding to destination development or management projects in critical moments of need, to help the long-term resiliency of tourism on the coast. 

The 2023 funds were focused on Sustainable Storytelling on the Oregon Coast. According to a 2022 report by Expedia Travel Group, 90 percent of consumers look for sustainable options when traveling. We wanted to help those consumers find coastal businesses prioritizing sustainability – and a great way to do that is by developing marketing content.

With the recent announcement of OCVA’s 2024 Strategic Investment Fund, we’re wrapping up the year 2023 and introducing you to the exciting work our applicants have taken on this year. 

Organizations all along the coast (businesses and Tribes) were invited to apply, and a total of six recipients took on projects with the funding. 

Overleaf Lodge and Spa and Fireside Motel

The family-run Overleaf Lodge and Spa and Fireside Motel in Yachats, OR, is a premiere destination on the Central Oregon Coast. They received funding to create short videos, blogs, and social media posts about their sustainability initiatives, including the electric vehicle charging stations, local environmental restoration efforts through guest donations, and contributions to Cape Perpetua Collaborative (a partnership dedicated to fostering conservation within the Yachats coastal environment), and View the Future, a Yachats-based nonprofit that’s responsible for stewarding and conserving land and wildlife habitats in the Yachats area.

Creative: Turell Group, Eugene

South Coast Tours

South Coast Tours, a tour operator in Port Orford, Oregon, received funding to tell the story of how their sustainable work on the Oregon Coast generates funds for organizations like the Elakha Alliance and the Oregon Kelp Alliance.

The Elakha Alliance is a non-profit working to bring back the Sea Otters to the Oregon coast.  The Oregon Kelp Alliance is a non-profit working to restore Oregon’s Kelp Ecosystems and South Coast Tours is a founding partner conducting dive trips for the organization to do habitat surveys, training of new research divers, and urchin culling. 

Funds went towards the creation of photo assets (paddling, wildlife viewing and diving boat tours) that will help tell the story over a series of social media posts that highlight this work. 

Creative: Studio Goo, Justin Myers and Erik Urdahl Photography

Shifting Tides

Shifting Tides is an organization run by Alanna Kieffer which offers educational workshops that connect people to nature, to intertidal food systems, and to edible wild foods. In line with work around the sustainability of our local food systems, Shifting Tides received funding to create videos and social media promos highlighting the programs. 

The videos highlight the abundance and diversity of life along the Oregon Coast and the opportunities for firsthand exploration and education in the field, as well as the specific workshops that are available, like sustainable clamming and mussel foraging.

Creative: Elevation 0M

Wildspring Guest Habitat

WildSpring Guest Habitat is a small eco-friendly resort in Port Orford. Everything they do has been designed to have a minimum impact on the environment, and all their choices were made with three questions in mind: Will it be beautiful in a natural way? Will it help protect the environment? Will it make guests feel cared for?

The WildSpring Guest Habitat received funding to take photos and videos, and share out a blog story highlighting their sustainability initiatives. These include EV charging stations free to guests, development and operations focused on sustainable practices, carbon neutral operations, sustainable building practices, and water and energy-saving practices.

Creative: Manuela Durson Photography

Itty Bitty Inn

The Itty Bitty Inn in North Bend received funding to tell sustainable stories about the two EV chargers that were installed in 2017 (and were the first Tesla Destination Charging Network stations listed in the North Bend/Coos Bay area). 

A series of promotional videos and a longform documentary will tell the story of North Bend and Coos Bay as a sustainable destination – highlighting integrations of economic and ecological sustainability practices like North Bend’s 2023 Solar & Electric Vehicle Fest. The 2023 event included a circuit of food and snack carts, rock bands, Celtic and folk musicians, solar installers, electric/hybrid vehicle dealerships and manufacturers, and community non-profit groups. This was an incredible opportunity to celebrate sustainable travel, and highlight the employment boom underway for electricians, solar installers, and hospitality specialists who are needed in the blossoming EV infrastructure industry.

Creative: Lumen Brite Video

Local Ocean

Local Ocean in Newport, OR is a sustainable seafood restaurant that sources directly from local Oregon fishers. They received funding to tell a multimedia story about our local food systems, and to educate about how visitors can make sustainable climate-friendly food choices. The final series of videos and photos will cover a range of topics, including growing/harvesting food, food transportation and the carbon savings of eating locally harvested foods, food packaging, processing, and waste.

Creative: Elevation 0M

These projects are ongoing, and we look forward to seeing the impact all their marketing materials make on the future of sustainable tourism on the Oregon Coast.

2024 Strategic Investment Fund to Support Accessibility on the Oregon Coast

In order to increase accessibility on the Oregon Coast, OCVA has designated this year’s annual Strategic Investment Fund to support Mobi-mat program implementations. 

Organizations who are interested in purchasing a mat should explore our comprehensive Mobi-mat Toolkit, which outlines the essential steps for acquiring, sustaining, and effectively integrating a Mobi-mat within your community. Upon ensuring all necessary components of the program are in order, they can complete the application here.  Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis while funds are available.

OCVA looks forward to reviewing applications, and to helping roll out even more Mobi-mats on the Oregon Coast. For questions relating to the toolkit or application, email industry@thepeoplescoast.com. Learn more about Mobi-mats and other Oregon Coast Travelability initiatives here.