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Hoping To Renegotiate Debt, ‘Please Touch’ Museum Withholds Bond Payment

By Mark Abrams

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The board of directors of the Please Touch Museum has decided to hold back a payment on its bond debt to trigger negotiations which it says may ensure the long-term survival of the nonprofit organization.

Lynn McMaster, the interim president and CEO of the children’s museum in Fairmount Park says the move will not affect the day-to-day operations of the popular attraction.

“It has absolutely no impact on our operations,” she told KYW Newsradio today.  “It’s business as usual here and, as you know, we’re a terrific place for children and families in the region. We’re open for business, and we intend to keep it that way.”

McMaster says the board simply wants to renegotiate the terms of its $60-million debt with bondholders, and by withholding a $2-million payment due now, the board is hoping to bring the parties to the table to do that.

The museum borrowed the money to cover renovations for Memorial Hall, the site where it moved five years ago.

McMaster says the action will not affect staffing, hours, or fall exhibits and programs.


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