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As the whole city prepares to welcome Pope Francis into “The City of Brotherly Love,” there are some who would rather celebrate his arrival in a much less traditional way — a Pope Pub Crawl.

Yes, you read that right. The Pope-themed bar crawl starts at noon this Saturday and goes on until 8 p.m. About 20 bars and restaurants have signed up to ensure a successful crawl, offering food and drink specials in every location — which are conveniently close to the Pope’s stops on his visit to Philly.

Matt Stehman, one of the organizers of the event, posted on Facebook that the “event was not intended to poke fun at the Catholic Church, the pope or any of their followers. This event was created to celebrate the arrival of a world leader who, in my opinion, is a great role model for all of humanity, regardless of religion.”

If the combination of welcoming the pope and drink specials doesn’t quite convince Philadelphia residents, maybe helping out a local food bank will. Ray Sheehan, one of the event organizers from, said that one thing that makes this bar crawl so unique is that you'll be having a good time while doing community service. A portion of every ticket sold will go in support of Philabundance, a local food bank.

Philabundance is the region’s largest hunger relief organization, providing emergency food and access to services to around 750,000 people at risk of hunger and food insecurity in various underserved communities in the Delaware Valley.

“The idea is that you have the pope in town, you have this amazing event happening in Philadelphia; and then you have this really cool bar crawl happening in parallel with that,” Sheehan said. “The pope’s here, spreading the good word, [and we’re] also trying to do something good [while] he’s in town."

Pope Francis has spoken out against the scourge of hunger saying that “the scandal that millions of people suffer from hunger must not paralyze us, but push each and every one of us to act: singles, families, communities, institutions, governments, to eliminate this injustice." 

In terms of the inspiration for the event, Sheehan said, "We don’t foresee this being your traditional bar crawl … this will give people that live in the city, and people that are traveling … an opportunity to really experience what makes Philadelphia so unique. Which are these incredible neighborhoods that are all throughout the city.”

CODA will be hosting the official after party from 8 p.m. to midnight “to get everyone together that participated in the Pope Pub Crawl,” Sheehan said.

Over 9,000 people have already RSVPed for the event on Facebook. Tickets include a free drink and a "Crawl Map," which attendees can get at one of the various check-in locations at the event and are on sale at

So, if you’re one of the many that would rather welcome the “Pope of the People” with a drink in hand while also helping out a good cause, then brave the crowds and get ready to bar hop.

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