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The Downtown Sudbury Business Improvement Area (BIA) is a big supporter of initiatives that bring residents, workers, and visitors together to participate in unique and engaging experiences.

Sponsorship Guidelines

Please note: Applications must be received at least 60 days before the scheduled event date to be eligible for consideration. 

The Downtown Sudbury Business Improvement Area (BIA) is a big supporter of initiatives that bring residents, workers, and visitors together to participate in unique and engaging experiences. Given the BIA’s small staff complement, it is particularly supportive of activations by individuals or groups that require little BIA staff support time and deliver big impacts and positive impressions of Downtown Sudbury. Applications that engage with, benefit, or include multiple Downtown Sudbury member businesses will be prioritized. The BIA is looking for entrepreneurial, creative partners to kick-start this new program.

New and New-to-Downtown festivals may have access to higher amounts of seed funding, and then over time it would be expected that annual contributions would gradually be reduced as the festival becomes better established and alternative, sustainable funding streams are accessed.


Organizations are encouraged to apply for sponsorship throughout the year. The BIA wants Downtown Sudbury to be vibrant year-round. It will prioritize applications that activate during off-peak seasons, like Winter.


The BIA supports organizations through cash and/or in-kind sponsorships. Cash will be limited to an amount to help organizers leverage additional sponsorships from other funders. In-kind promotion to our membership may occur through any of the following: inclusion in e-newsletters, listings on our website, promotion through social media, and advocacy and guidance from BIA staff on how to navigate the City of Greater Sudbury's Event Planning and permitting processes.


The BIA does not organize or co-organize the event.

Streams of Sponsorship


This sponsorship stream partners with medium- to large-scale festivals, spectacles, events or programming within our BIA catchment. Usually, there is a clear identity or theme to the festival,

and focus can be on components like music, dance, food, sport, art, film etc.

Community Experience

Times are changing and not all creative ventures are the same - if the primary focus of your event is to help combat social isolation or engage under-represented groups, this stream just might be for you! This type of sponsorship focuses more on small- to medium-scale activations (events, festivals, art, performances, installations etc.) that are often grassroots, start-up, or experimental. The impacts of these experiences are often subtle, and seemingly spontaneous forms of engagement in the public realm or publicly accessible spaces.

Think interactive lighting installations, art, street theatre, physical fitness, surprises and delights.


Communications and Exposure

The event must include a comprehensive communication strategy with an innovative and creative concept, measurable objectives, and a plan for soliciting media coverage as well as advertising (e.g.: news releases, published list of sponsors, TV, radio, printed materials, social media). As part of all sponsorships, the Downtown Sudbury BIA will notify membership about events through our newsletter. Communications strategies must include efforts to engage with BIA

member businesses and ensure that they are aware of sponsored event offerings.


Sponsored activations must be organized, and communicated effectively and respectfully with everyone impacted by the event. Notifying BIA members of road closures, noise bylaw exemptions, possible business obstructions, delays, or inconveniences must be articulated a MINIMUM of 6 weeks before the event.

In many cases, a Special Event Application MUST be completed and submitted to the City of Greater Sudbury at least 60 days before your event, at or by contacting


The BIA aims for a comprehensive sponsorship portfolio that has something for everyone. Partners are encouraged to focus on a specific area such as culture, art, traditional holidays, shopping,

dining, sports or district living. The BIA does not sponsor political events or rallies, professional

conventions or charitable/fundraising efforts.

Downtown Destination

Proposals must describe why Downtown Sudbury is the preferred location to host an event and what advantages your organization would have in being in the district. They must provide examples of how organizers would showcase Downtown Sudbury as a destination through the promotion and implementation of an event. Programming must take place within the BIA’s catchment area.

Financially Accessible

The program gives preference to activations that are as accessible and inclusive as possible. Ideally, ‘free’ components are widely available and ticketed or admission-based events have affordable price points.

Physically Accessible

Events that meet the accessibility standards of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act will be prioritized.

Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

Events that promote diversity, support inclusion, and/or intentionally target equity-seeking communities will be prioritized.


The BIA encourages sustainable practices in all of its event organizer partners. In addition to demonstrating adequate resource capacity for producing a quality experience, event organizers must demonstrate how environmentally sustainable practices are incorporated into their activation.

Alignment with the BIA's Target Audience

The Downtown Sudbury BIA’s target audience is primarily focused on getting people to work, play, and live in Downtown Sudbury. Sponsored events must align their target market with that focus, and engage Downtown Sudbury locals, residents of Greater Sudbury, and regional residents over tourists. Priority will be given to activations that entice local and regional residents to come Downtown when they might not otherwise do so.

Placement and Branding

Proposals must provide opportunities to brand Downtown Sudbury in all promotional materials, event website, event signage, etc. The sponsorship must enhance the profile and prestige of the ‘Downtown Sudbury’ or the ‘Downtown Sudbury BIA’ brand as well as emphasize Downtown’s vibrancy and/or uniqueness.


The BIA does not require nor seek exclusivity as a sponsor. It encourages as much partnership and involvement of the community as possible.

Practical Application

The sponsorship must have a practical application (booths on-site, outreach opportunities, inclusion in programming/event offerings, etc.) enabling the Downtown Sudbury BIA or our members to engage with the event audience. We do not undertake sponsorships that only allow us to position the association’s logo.


If the sponsorship contains receivable due to The DSBIA, we ask that they be articulated and/or delivered upon reception of your sponsorship cheque.

Project Plan & Measurement

A formal plan should be in place that outlines the event’s objectives and how to achieve them. An evaluation/measurement system and safety plan/risk assessment must be shown to be in place in advance. Analysis of the activation in the form of a final report will include results of that predetermined measurement system, i.e., surveys. A draft budget should be included.

Post Mortem

The DSBIA asks that all sponsorships be concluded with a self-evaluation style post-mortem. Future sponsorships can be reliant on

this being completed. Please find the Post Mortem Form below.

Set Up For Success

To ensure that all events and activations in Downtown Sudbury are set up for success, Downtown Sudbury requires that all sponsored activities will adhere to all City of Greater Sudbury, AGCO, provincial, and federal laws and requirements, and will be held safely and inclusively.

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