Area businesses feel situation in Ferguson having negative impact on tourism

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by KMOV.com Staff

KMOV.com

Posted on September 2, 2014 at 9:39 PM

Updated Tuesday, Sep 2 at 9:39 PM

FERGUSON, Mo. (KMOV.com) – The recent protests and looting in Ferguson has businesses in the area feeling compromised.

LoRusso’s Cucina of The Hill neighborhood in St. Louis has gotten business from out-of-towners in the past. But recently, an Indiana tour group said half the group did not want to come to the city, even though it is 18 miles away from Ferguson.

“[They] … didn’t want to come to St. Louis based on the ‘racial tension going on,’” said Rich LoRusso of LoRusso’s Cucina. “I was pretty shocked, based on the footprint of where Ferguson is and where the rest of us are conducting business.”

Dea Hoover of Discover St. Louis said people need to brand St. Louis as a city for visitors.

“Their concern is ‘will it be safe for my group? Will we be near any of the rioting,’” said Hoover.

Misconceptions and misinformation are presenting itself through conversation and social media. Explore St. Louis recently addressed several questions by out-of-towners on their website. The questions asked whether it was safe to visit St. Louis and how people could help Ferguson.

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