New Pennsylvania tourism website focuses on online visits, experiences

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — Pennsylvania’s tourism office has collected a series of online experiences for its website to encourage visits after pandemic restrictions are lifted.

The new visitpa.com is now titled “Pursue your Hominess.”

Carrie Fischer Lepore, deputy secretary for marketing and Pennsylvania tourism, said the concept is simple: Explore now, visit later.

“So we’re linking the things we’re sharing — like gardening, a guitar jam session with Martin Guitar, virtual campfires, things like that — to a Pennsylvania experience you can have later,” Fischer said.

On Friday night, Philadelphia will step into the spotlight with a cooking segment featuring famed chef Mark Vetri, to be released on Facebook, Lepore said. 

“And we’ll be following up with a performance by the Philadelphia Orchestra.”

Lepore said the site also offers outdoor experiences, historical pursuits and even virtual walks through the Philadelphia Museum of Art and along the streets of South Philadelphia.

“Tourism is big business in Pennsylvania,” she said. “It is the backbone of our economy, and we’re just looking forward to getting people visiting and traveling again.”

Lepore said the state’s tourism industry has suffered losses in the billions of dollars because of the pandemic.

She said the new website will evolve as Gov. Tom Wolf begins relaxing restrictions on counties across the state.

“Shortly we’re going to be pivoting to experiences that you can have within a safe distance of your home — about 15 minutes or miles,” Lepore said.