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Philly’s Tourism Industry Comes Through For Stranded German Students

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(The Inn at Penn, in West Philadelphia, has offered rooms to a group of German high school students whose tour operator went bankrupt.   File photo provided)

(The Inn at Penn, in West Philadelphia, has offered rooms to a group of German high school students whose tour operator went bankrupt. File photo provided)

John McDevitt John McDevitt
John McDevitt has been a reporter and editor at KYW Newsradio 1060...
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By John McDevitt

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A group of students from Germany, in this country to learn about US history, has gotten an unexpected lesson about Philadelphia hospitality after their tour operator suddenly went bankrupt.

The twenty-four German high school students, on a month-long tour of the United States, were in Kansas City when they learned the group operator filed bankruptcy and that their Philadelphia hotel deposit was gone.

When the Greater Philadelphia Hotel Association found out about their plight, an effort to help the group went into play.

“We had the availability, and we took care of that part of things,” says Greg Stafford, general manager of the Hilton Inn at Penn, in University City.  “And then the more we thought about it, we just felt like we wanted to make it a big win — more than just fix the problem — make it a special occasion for them so they go home from the United States and Philadelphia with great memories.”

There will be more freebies for the stranded students.  Area restaurants including Baby Blues BBQ have offered food, and the Phillies are comping them tickets to Saturday night’s game.

Museums such as the Philadelphia History Museum (formerly the Atwater Kent) and the National Constitution Center are also opening their doors for free to the students.   And Philadelphia Trolley Works will provide transportation during their weekend stay.

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