Co-branding theory suggests that pairing an event with a destination will engender some transfer of image between the event and destination brands. The match-up hypothesis predicts that the direction and intensity of image transfer will depend on the quality of fit between event and destination brands. A 3 (activity level of city) x 3 (activity level of sport event) design was used to construct destination advertisements. The print advertisements were shown to a sample of 275 individuals who then rated the city and event on activity and evaluation scales. The presence of any sport event elevated city activity ratings, but event activity ratings were elevated only when the event was paired with a leisurely city. A mismatch of activity ratings negatively affected evaluation of a leisurely city, but the presence of any sport event elevated evaluation of an active city. Evaluation ratings mediated the event's effect on intention to visit the host city. Findings suggest that match-up between events and destinations is determined by priming of schema rather than by shared levels of a characteristic. Findings also suggest that familiarity with a brand may determine whether a paired brand's characteristic is assimilated or is a context for contrast. Implications for future research are discussed.