For release: Immediate
Contact:  John Golden

 Montgomery County Prepares for Attendees at the
2015 World Meeting of Families, Papal Visit

KING OF PRUSSIA, Pa. - Montgomery County, Pa., is eagerly anticipating the influx of visitors from all over the world for the September 2015 World Meeting of Families, especially in light of the confirmation of a visit from His Holiness, Pope Francis. The event marks the first visit of the current Pontiff to the U.S.

"This is an event for our entire region like no other from both an economic standpoint and also a spiritual one," says Josh Shapiro, Chairman of the Montgomery County Board of Commissioners. "It will be an honor to welcome the Holy Father and surround his invitees - the families of the world - with the warmth, care and attention that Montgomery County is known for. We are proud and eager to participate in this historic conference."

Local accommodations have more than sufficient capacity to welcome attendees, with 70 hotel properties providing 8,400 rooms. The County's proximity to Center City Philadelphia - a short 18-mile commute by car and ample connections to mass transit via bus and rail - makes it a convenient stay for people attending the entire September 22-27 conference or just the Papal Mass itself, which closes the event on September 27, 2015. Economic impact benefiting the County is estimated at approximately $10 million, resulting from over 7,000 room nights. Overall lift, according to the Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau, is an estimated $417 million for the entire region.

"The Valley Forge Tourism & Convention Board will work closely with our partners in Philadelphia and the surrounding counties to ensure visitors have a positive experience when they attend the World Meeting of Families 2015," adds Bill Fitzgerald, president of the Valley Forge Tourism & Convention Board. "Our special micro-site on will list information on room-booking and provide details for organizers bringing groups to the County."

According to Fitzgerald, Montgomery County's locale is ideal: close enough to the program in Philadelphia for commuting purposes, but far away enough to promote quiet contemplation and spiritual reflection. "We offer the best of both worlds," he says. "While visitors are here, they can enjoy our open landscapes, our arts and culture scene, and examples of some of the most inspiring architecture ever built."

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The Valley Forge Tourism and Convention Board is a nonprofit, membership-based sales and marketing organization that actively promotes the Valley Forge area and Montgomery County, Pa., as a convention site and leisure visitor destination by encouraging patronage of its 300-plus member hotels, restaurants, attractions and services. The Board's website serves visitors, meeting planners, tour operators and residents, as well as hosting The Pursuit, a twice-weekly blog.