Orlando tourism grew in 2016, despite tragic headlines

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — The number of visitors coming to Orlando, Florida continued to grow last year, despite a series of tragic headlines coming out of the region.

Tourism officials announced Thursday that more than 68 million visitors came to Orlando in 2016, a 3 percent increase over the previous year.

The new visitor numbers allowed the theme-park mecca to keep its bragging rights as the nation’s most-visited destination.

Last summer was tough on Orlando: In the span of a week, there was the Pulse nightclub shooting, the death of a toddler in an alligator attack at Disney World and the fatal shooting of singer Christina Grimmie after a concert.

The head of Orlando’s tourism marketing agency says 2017 is off to a good start, propelled by strong convention business.

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