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Philly Officials, Merchants Say Rainy June Dampened Summer Tourism

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A popular stop on the agenda of most Philadelphia visitors is a cheesesteak cart or stand. credit: Michelle Durham)

A popular stop on the agenda of most Philadelphia visitors is a cheesesteak cart or stand. credit: Michelle Durham)

Michelle Durham Michelle Durham
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By Michelle Durham

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Philadelphia business and tourism officials say this past summer season was no record setter.

Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation President Meryl Levitz says there were some key factors that made this summer unique.

“With having the rainiest month in Philadelphia’s history in June — it did rain 15 days during that month — outdoor locations like Old City really felt the impact of that,” she says. “The other thing, of course, was the effect of the sequester.”

Independence National Historic Park officials were forced to close buildings and limit tour hours when congressionally mandated budget cuts went into effect.

David Jolles, who owns Grande Olde Cheesesteak in the Bourse Building, on the east side of Independence Mall, agrees that it was a tough summer.

“The weather is definitely a big factor, because Philadelphia is an outdoor tour for a lot of people. There is a lot of walking, and when it is raining they don’t want to come out,” Jolles says.

Levitz, the tourism marketing official. says the crowds and numbers rebounded in July and August but agrees that you can’t fight Mother Nature.

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