Philadelphia Is Seeking Gay Tourists, Again

On the 10th anniversary of the groundbreaking “Get Your History Straight and Your Nightlife Gay” campaign, Philadelphia is once again reaching out to gay tourists—this time with a video featuring a “flamboyant female impersonator” taking viewers on a tour of the city’s historic sites.

The New York Times reports:

Dressed in a red-and-white striped skirt and a tight blue bodice, Miss Richfield poses with Betsy Ross — the Betsy Ross House is in the city — and runs the “Rocky Steps” at the art museum but is distracted by the muscular torsos of a quartet of young male joggers on the banks of the Schuylkill.

Philadelphia’s combination of culture and a gay-friendly atmosphere has proved to be a strong draw for the LGBT community, which has made the city one of the top 10 gay destinations in the United States, said Meryl Levitz, chief executive of the Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation.

Ms. Levitz said the new commercial, to be unveiled at the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association convention in Boston in late August, recognizes both the 10th anniversary of Philadelphia’s campaign, and the recent gains in gay rights across the country.

“We felt the best way to celebrate would be to reinforce the invitation,” she said.

Here’s one of the old ads, which seems pretty tame—holding off on its big gay reveal until the very last second: