Regional economic leaders say ArtPrize will boost economic development, tourism

Grand Rapids business and economic leaders say the recently announced ArtPrize competition brings a new edge to economic development in the city. The competition provides marketing ammunition for conventions and positions the region as a competitive market for younger, forward thinking entrepreneurs.

According to excerpts from the story:

GRAND RAPIDS - The inaugural ArtPrize competition gives a boost to regional economic development and tourism marketing efforts, according to area officials. Birgit Klohs, president and CEO of The Right Place Inc., said she markets a product called Grand Rapids and West Michigan — and ArtPrize improves that product.

"It’s a huge product improvement. It’s a repositioning in the minds of people who may not have thought of us as an arts community," Klohs told MiBiz. "To me, it’s spreading the word to a different audience about who we are, which is a huge plus for a lot of our marketing efforts."

Rick DeVos, founder of Spout.com and grandson of Amway co-founder Richard DeVos, announced ArtPrize on April 23. Artists from around the world have been invited to participate in the competition expected to award $400,000 in prize money including $250,000 for first place to the artist receiving the most public votes.

Read the complete story here.

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