Shutdown week 2: Independence Visitor Center opens temporary digs

U.S. Park Rangers move barricades to close off Independence Mall due to the government shutdown. Credit: Charles Mostoller, Metro
U.S. Park Rangers move barricades to close off Independence Mall due to the government shutdown. Credit: Charles Mostoller, Metro

As week two of the government shutdown continues, Independence Visitor Center president Jim Cuorato is feeling the effects.

He’s had to lay off 90 percent of his staff until the shutdown is over and deal with a substantial amount of lost revenue in gift shop purchases.

“That troubles me deeply,” he said. “I have a terrific staff and they’ve all accepted it with grace and understood the situation we’re in.”

But Cuorato is feeling a little less helpless these days; yesterday, IVC reached an agreement with Historic Philadelphia, Inc. to set up temporary shop at their headquarters on Sixth and Chestnut streets — only a block away from the IVC location — to accommodate visitors to the Historic District.

“My frustration level had just reached a point where I said, ‘I’m not going to sit back anymore and watch all these frustrated visitors wander around and look for information,’” he said.

Visitors can get brochures, maps and tickets to attractions right in the historic district.

“It was the first good day we’ve had since this shutdown started,” he said. “We’re not just accepting this shutdown.”

Normally during this season, Cuorato said, 6,000 to 8,000 visitors will go to the IVC during the week while upward of 15,000 will visit on weekends.

“If we can help even just 500 people a day, then I will feel as though we are accomplishing something.”

The good news is that the other visitor centers — namely in Love and Sister Cities parks —are seeing more traffic.

And also, when the shutdown is over, Cuorato laid off staff will be rehired back. “That’s can’t come soon enough.”

Follow Metro Philadelphia on Twitter: @metrophilly

Follow City Editor Christina Paciolla on Twitter: @cpaciolla

Follow Metro Philadelphia on Facebook: Metro Philadelphia


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Rapper affiliate of Wu-Tang Clan 'cuts off own…

Rapper Andre Johnson, who has performed with New York outfit the Wu-Tang Clan, is in a critical condition after reportedly cutting off his own penis…

National

Cleavage complaint: Disneyland staffer orders curvy mom to…

A curvy mom-of-three says she filed a formal complaint after staff at Disneyland Resort in California ordered her to cover up her boobs. Melissa Behnken,…

Local

Supporters say man accused of robbery was misidentified

A Liberian immigrant couple charged with extorting money from an elderly woman in March will be in court Thursday for a bail hearing, but supporters say it's a case of…

International

Canadian charged in 'Heartbleed' attack on tax agency

OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canadian police have arrested a 19-year-old man and charged him in connection with exploiting the "Heartbleed" bug to steal taxpayer data from…

Television

‘Survivor: Cagayan’ recap: Episode 8

Sure, it's called Survivor. But this season should really be called 'The Tony Show.'

Television

Jim Rash talks 'The Writer's Room' and amazing…

For Jim Rash, as the fifth season of "Community" comes to a close, the second season of "The Writer's Room" begins.

Television

'Dexter' star Jennifer Carpenter moves into producing role

The actress who played the title character's sister in "Dexter" is teaming up with producer George Stelzner to adapt Erika Hayasaki's book "The Death Class:…

The Word

Wahlburgers announce North America domination

Tuesday was a huge day for Donnie Wahlberg.

NFL

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April version

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April version

NHL

Flyers, Rangers meet in playoffs for 11th time

The Flyers and Rangers will start a new chapter in a historic rivalry.

MLB

MLB Power Rankings: A's are baseball's best, Brewers…

MLB Power Rankings: A's are baseball's best, Brewers and Braves right behind

NHL

Top 5 Philadelphia storylines for Flyers-Rangers

The slate is clean for the Flyers and the Rangers. Which is good news for the Flyers.

Wellbeing

This Week in Health: chocolate may prevent obesity…

Can chocolate prevent obesity and diabetes? Location of study: U.S. Study subjects: Mice Results: The positive health benefits of chocolate have been studied increasingly more…

Wellbeing

This Week in Health News: breastfed infants trying…

Are breastfed infants trying to prevent mom from having another baby? Theory: The act of breastfeeding not only brings mom and baby closer together –…

Wellbeing

Unexplained infertility may be caused by lack of…

Researchers have identified a protein on the egg's surface that interacts with another protein on the surface of sperm, allowing the two cells to join.

Tech

5 surprising facts about Google Glass

Your sex life could get more interesting.