Nearly 500 members of local, national and international media turned out Thursday for a walk-through hosted by the Democratic National Convention Committee at the Wells Fargo Center, the host site for the convention.
The convention will be held July 26-28 and is expected to draw 50,000 attendees, including 20,000 members of the media. The Democratic candidate for president of the United States will be nominated during the upcoming convention.
Mayor Michael Nutter welcomed the media to the city during the walk-through.
“Today I was honored to extend a warm welcome to members of the media from across the Commonwealth, country and globe as they prepare to cover the 2016 Democratic Convention,” Nutter said. “I am very proud that the 2016 Convention will take place here in Philadelphia, the birthplace of democracy and freedom. Since the city of Philadelphia was chosen to host the 2016 Democratic Convention, my team and I have worked hard to ensure the success of this convention, its participants and that our city of brotherly love and sisterly affection will continue to shine brightly to the nation and the world. The media has a crucial role and this media walk-through is a great step toward making sure the press is fully prepared to cover this historic convention.”
During the event, Nutter addressed concerns expressed by some media due to logistical challenges faced by the city during the World Meeting of Families and the papal visit in September.
“I can appreciate for those who covered the visit, that there might be some level of comparison,” he said. “I think that the only thing that is completely similar is that both events are national, special-security events. I think that everyone coming, knows why they are coming and they will have credentials. No one is just showing up.”
“The logistics, the movement and all of that activity [are] very different, as compared to the World Meeting of Families and the papal visit. I think that the differences will be stark in that regard.”
The event served as a forum for the convention leadership team to provide a general overview of the Wells Fargo Center’s space for media outlets and to share information on the housing process, transportation and logistics. The DNCC plans to host a second media walk-through in the spring.
“Conventions play an important role in our American democracy. They are an opportunity for both political parties to share their values and their vision for the future,” DNCC CEO Rev. Leah D. Daughtry said.
“They give us a chance to introduce or reintroduce our nominee, our standard bearer, that we propose to lead the country and they are an important reminder of the vital role that we the people play in determining our collective destiny.”
The convention’s afternoon sessions will be held at the Pennsylvania Convention Center, while the Wells Fargo Center will host evening events.