Art and Entertainment

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Cities Celebrate Television Exposure as ‘Office’ Convention Gets Underway

October 26, 2007 08:59 AM
by findingDulcinea Staff
Scranton, Pennsylvania, pays tribute to its role in the television show “The Office” with a weekend-long convention, becoming one of many cities to revel in their small screen stardom.

30-Second Summary

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Popular television shows are a powerful marketing tool, and their power to attract publicity can extend far beyond product placement and advertising.

Shows set in real cities often create strong associations between the fictional world of the television studio and its factual referent.

Increasingly, cities are embracing these connections as a way to raise their profile and bolster tourist industries. Many times the initial burst of enthusiasm for a project wanes over time.

Scranton, Pennsylvania, a former coal-mining town of about 75,000 people, is not usually a tourist hotspot.

Yet at least 2,000 people will happily converge on the city this weekend for a three-day celebration of its connection to the hit NBC television show “The Office.” Convention planners have already collected $150,000 in ticket sales.

Cities large and small have made similar moves, throwing parties, hosting festivals, and erecting statues all in the name of popular television and profits.

But it is not all about the money.

The New York Times writes that Scranton “is in the midst of an economic and cultural revival,” and that both convention planners and the mayor think “The Office” is a big part of that.

Headline Links: 'The Office' and Scranton, PA

Background: 'Napoleon Dynamite' festivities and television memorials

Related Topics: Springfield, VT hosts Simpsons party and the golden touch of ‘Seinfeld’

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