Illinois Hopes 'Obama Buzz' Will Boost Tourism

By: AP
By: AP
Tourism officials in Illinois say they expect a boost from Barack Obama

President-elect Obama, center, meets with his economic advisory team in Chicago, Friday, Nov. 7, 2008. Facing camera, from left are, Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm, Vice President-elect Joe Biden, former Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker and Time Warner Chairman Richard Parsons. Back to camera, from left are, White House Chief of Staff-designate Rahm Emanual and Google CEO Eric Schmidt. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

CHICAGO – Tourism officials in Illinois say they expect a boost from Barack Obama's election, and they're doing what they can to capitalize on the Obama buzz.

A Chicago tourism Web site invites travel-planners to "experience the city the Obamas enjoy." The Illinois Bureau of Tourism plans to launch a three-day getaway featuring Obama sites. And in Springfield, tour guides at the Old State Capitol may get new scripts.

Catherine Williams volunteers as a Chicago Greeter for Chicago's tourism office. She leads walking tours and gets visitors as close to the Obamas' Hyde Park home as the Secret Service will allow.

A hand-lettered sign in one Chicago bookstore window congratulates "longtime customer" Obama. A nearby restaurant has sold 3,000 T-shirts that read "Obama Eats Here."


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