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Time to get excited about papal visit, Nutter says

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 Surrounded by city officials, Mayor Nutter called the pope's visit historic and urged residents to get excited. (Tom MacDonald/WHYY)

Surrounded by city officials, Mayor Nutter called the pope's visit historic and urged residents to get excited. (Tom MacDonald/WHYY)

You’ve heard endless details about logistics.

But now, during the few final days of preparations, is the time for everyone in Philadelphia to get excited about the papal visit, according to Mayor Michael Nutter. 

“It’s coming,” the mayor said Wednesday.

Surrounded by city officials, Nutter called the pope’s visit historic and urged residents to get excited about the arrival of Pope Francis in the city Sept. 26.

“There are people all over the world who, unfortunately, may never have the opportunity that we will have to welcome a leader of international importance like Pope Francis to their hometown, much less to see him in person,” he said. “We have that opportunity … let’s make the most of it.”

While he expects big crowds, Nutter said he knows some will choose to get out of town.

“I’m not going to drag people out of their houses and say, ‘Hey, you gotta go.’ It’s a joyous event,” he said. “I think that we will be pleasantly surprised as to a great mix of Philadelphians, people from the suburbs, other Americans who will all be in this great big melting pot.”

Nutter has assured residents of citywide police and fire protection that weekend, not just downtown.

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