Philly Pulls Out All the Stops to Lure Democratic Convention to Town

Democratic Party officials considering Philadelphia as a potential host for its 2016 national convention were treated to a tour of a sports arena, a famed cheesesteak shop and a raucous welcome as they arrived Wednesday for a two-day site visit.

Representatives from the DNC's site committee came to Philadelphia as part of a tour to assess the city's ability to host the 2016 Democratic National Convention. Philadelphia is one of five cities bidding to host the convention along with Birmingham, Alabama; Columbus, Ohio; Brooklyn, New York, and Phoenix.

Hundreds of people -- including Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter and former Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell -- were on hand at the Radisson Blu Warwick Hotel in Center City to welcome the 18 DNC officials, who arrived by bus from New York on Wednesday morning, according to Kevin Washo, a lead strategist for the nonprofit pushing to hold the convention in Philadelphia.

After some downtime at the hotel, the committee members headed to Pat's Steaks for cheesesteaks late Wednesday morning. Lunch was followed by a trip to Wells Fargo Center, the South Philly arena the convention would be held at if Philadelphia were to host it. The city's convention center also would be used for caucus meetings and other convention-related events.

Later Wednesday, the delegation hit up Reading Terminal Market around dinner time before taking a night tour of Independence Hall.

The trip will wrap up on Thursday after visits to the Comcast Center and a rally at the National Constitution Center. It is expected to cost more than $200,000 between in-kind contributions and expenses from the nonprofit, Washo said.

Nutter, Rendell and Democratic U.S. Rep. Bob Brady held a rally at a beer garden near Independence Hall last week to drum up support for the city's bid to host the convention.

DNC representatives Wrapped up a two-day tour of New York on Tuesday.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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