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Big duck bringing flock of 'quackages' to Pittsburgh

Thursday, Sept. 26, 2013, 8:55 p.m.

A visit from a four-story Rubber Duck is a tourism opportunity that does not happen every day, says Connie George, vice president of communications for VisitPittsburgh.

“We're getting calls every day about the duck,” she says, explaining the strategy at getting area hotels to offer packages centered on the appearance of the Rubber Duck Project during the Pittsburgh International Festival of Firsts.

The special “quackages,” will bring a newer, more leisurely attitude to the Omni William Penn, says Bob Page, director of marketing for the Downtown hotel, which has a fairly strong business trade through the work week.

“It gives people one more reason to come into the city,” he says.

The Omni changes from a business attitude to a more casual one at the end of every week, he says, and the Rubber Duck visit will provide yet another reason for family stays.

“There is just so much fun to the duck's first visit to North America,”says Julie Abramovic, public relations manager of the Fairmont Pittsburgh, Downtown, is difficult “not to get behind it.”

National and international news coverage does not hurt either, she says.

“We are so very grateful to the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust for bringing the Rubber Duck Project to Pittsburgh,” says Craig Davis, president and CEO of VisitPittsburgh. “Our partners are very excited about it.”

Here are some overnight quackages to look for:

Embassy Suites: The Lucky Duck Package at the Coraopolis location includes accommodations in a True Two-Room Suites, complimentary cooked-to-order breakfast and complimentary two-hour reception. Upon arrival, you'll receive a miniature rubber duck that will reveal a prize, ranging from bonus Hilton Honor Points to dinner, dessert or a complimentary night's stay at the hotel. And, take your $10 in Free Slot Play to Rivers Casino on your way to view the Rubber Duck Project. Don't miss the 4-foot-by-5-foot rubber duck floating in the Embassy Suites' Koi Pond. Details:

Fairmont Pittsburgh: Guests staying at Fairmont Pittsburgh the weekend of Sept. 27 to 29 can make a donation of their choice to the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust and then choose a rubber duck from the lobby display. Prizes include drinks in Andys, a 30-minute massage and an appetizer at Habitat. One lucky duck will win a one-night stay. Everyone walks away with a rubber ducky. Details:

Holiday Inn Express Waterfront: The Quack Package offers 20 percent off the regular room rate. Details: 412-205-3904

Omni William Penn Hotel: The Quack Package includes deluxe accommodations, breakfast for two, Cheese & Quackers' Amenity, Rubber Duck souvenir and a map to the Rubber Duck Project. Stay another night and receive 25 percent off the second night. Details:

Priory Hotel: The Quacktastic Special! runs Sundays to Thursdays through Oct. 20. Book a queen room for $109 and a king room for $129. Details:

Wyndham Grand Pittsburgh Downtown: The special quackage includes a “Duck-view” room, breakfast buffet for two, two tickets for a Just Ducky tour and a duck souvenir. Details: 877-999-3223 or

Bob Karlovits is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at or 412-320--7852.




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