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After Papal Visit, Tourism And Hospitality Industry In Philadelphia Looks To The Future

By Mark Abrams

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- The impact of the recent papal visit and the World Meeting of Families event in Philadelphia were subjects of a forum Tuesday on the campus of Temple University.

Panelists from the tourism and travel industry gathered in Mitten Hall to offer perspectives on what the visit of Pope Francis and the World Meeting Congress had on the city.

Jack Ferguson, president and CEO of the Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau, said the takeaway from the two big events is clear.

"Now we have that story to tell that we can even handle very complicated events," he said.

Meryl Levitz, president and CEO of Visit Philadelphia, said she's being asked now about the next big event. No, not the Democrats coming here next July for their presidential nominating convention.

"Are we going for a Super Bowl now?" Levitz asked. "Because people really see that as a huge international event."

Levitz said she's hoping to raise the issue with the new Philadelphia mayor after January.


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