World Meeting of Families – Philadelphia 2015 Kick-off #OpenInPHL

PHILADELPHIA (August 31, 2015) - The World Meeting of Families - Philadelphia 2015 (WMOF), in collaboration with the City of Philadelphia, today kicked-off the distribution of the #OpenInPHL kits to local businesses as a part of its recently announced "I'll Be There" awareness campaign.

The Francis Festival Street Team - led by Mayor Michael A. Nutter and Donna Crilley Farrell, Executive Director of the World Meeting of Families - Philadelphia 2015 - personally delivered #OpenInPHL kits to well-known Philadelphia establishments throughout the Francis Festival Grounds and beyond, including Wawa (17 th and Arch Streets), Pat's King of Steaks, Del Frisco's Double Eagle Steakhouse and McGillin's Olde Ale House. This tour across Philadelphia included cameo appearances from a quartet led by Bobby Mansure as well as local Philadelphia mascots, including La Salle University's Explorer, St. Joseph University's Hawk, the University of Pennsylvania's Quaker and Wawa's Wally Goose.

The #OpenInPHL kits include "I'll Be There" signage, a Welcome Pope Francis window cling, branded buttons, and additional information about the Francis Festival. The kits are designed to help businesses plan for the event and to provide information they can use to encourage residents and customers to fully experience the Francis Festival and Papal Visit. Additionally, the #OpenInPHL kits will be available for pick-up at locations across Philadelphia from Tuesday, September 1 st through Friday, September 4 th at:

Since the kick-off of the campaign on Wednesday, August 26, an additional pick-up location has been added:

"The World Meeting of Families - Philadelphia 2015 gives Philadelphia a unique opportunity to showcase our world-class city on a global stage," said Donna Crilley Farrell, Executive Director of the World Meeting of Families - Philadelphia 2015. "Through the "I'll Be There" campaign and the distribution of the #OpenInPHL kits, we are encouraging our local businesses to engage in these incredible events and truly show off our deeply-rooted Philadelphia culture. We strongly encourage all businesses within Philadelphia and beyond to take full advantage of the resourceful information within the #OpenInPHL kits, which can be picked up from various locations in the City of Philadelphia."

Distribution of the #OpenInPHL kits kicked-off at Wawa, which boasts one of the highest foot traffic for convenience stores and sandwich shops in Center City. Wawa stores in Philadelphia will not only remain open throughout the weekend of September 26-27, but the company will soon open a new flagship store at Broad and Walnut Streets, right in the heart of the Francis Festival Grounds.

"At Wawa, we are proud to join our friends and neighbors in welcoming Pope Francis, the World Meeting of Families, and the many visitors from around the world to our hometown, on this historic occasion," said Dave Simonetti, Director of Store Operations for Wawa, Inc. "We exist to fulfill customers lives every day, and part of this purpose extends to our commitment to remain open and available to the public 24/7. We look forward to being there for everyone during this momentous occasion with all of our Philadelphia stores open, stocked, and ready to serve."

A further extension of the "I'll Be There" campaign is, which was launched today by the World Meeting of Families - Philadelphia 2015. There, consumers and businesses can learn more about the Francis Festival Grounds, including how to be part of the World Meeting of Families #OpenInPHL Sweepstakes, for the chance to win a grand prize trip for two to Rome, Italy.

Consumers can also learn more about the #PopeInPhilly #RomeContest, which encourages Festival participants to show where they were at the Francis Festival by "snapping it!" Leveraging Instagram and Twitter, the World Meeting of Families is encouraging participants of the Francis Festival to create a virtual passport of their participation by sharing photographs of their patronage at local businesses displaying the official poster or window cling. Qualifying posts that tag or mention a participating business and include #PopeInPhilly and #RomeContest will enter a Festival participant into a sweepstakes to win a family vacation to Rome, Italy, courtesy of the World Meeting of Families - Philadelphia 2015. Updates on the sweepstakes will be announced on September 21, 2015.

In addition to, World Meeting of Families--Philadelphia 2015 also launched today a new transportation website, which will help those traveling to the Francis Festival. From SEPTA to PATCO to commercial bus operations, this web page will help both residents and businesses to better understand the transportation options available to them and to encourage planning that best meets the varied scenarios that those wishing to access the Francis Festival may face. This new transportation information can be accessed at

Co-sponsored by the Holy See's Pontifical Council for the Family and the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, the World Meeting of Families is a triennial global event that seeks to strengthen the sacred bonds of family across the globe and highlight its intrinsic value to the good of society. This international gathering will welcome Pope Francis to the United States for the first time in his Papacy. Being held in the United States for the first time ever, the official theme for the 2015 World Meeting of Families is "Love is Our Mission: The Family Fully Alive."