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Phil Matier: Batkid Day Costs San Francisco $105,000

SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – When San Francisco transformed into Gotham City last week, many wondered exactly how much it would cost the city. The bill is now in and all told, it cost San Francisco $105,000.

It was 5-year-old Miles Scott’s wish to become Batman for a day and the Make-A-Wish Foundation, along with the help of volunteers and city officials, made his wish come true on Friday, November 15.

Along with a Batman sidekick, “Batkid,” fought crime across the city throughout the day, with a huge crowd cheering him on each step of the way. He foiled the Riddler and the Penguin, who had captured Giants mascot Lou Seal, before being presented a chocolate key to the city for his heroic deeds by San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee.

The big-ticket item for the event was that celebration at the Civic Center, in which thousands gathered to see Lee and San Francisco Police Chief Greg Suhr present Miles the key to the city. A simple presentation had turned into a full-blown production, including big-screen TVS and professional, high-tech staging.

Chief Suhr said that police officers working the event were all on regular duty and were just being moved around from one part of the city to another, like for all other big events. It’s the same for the Department of Public Works, charged with cleanup.

The city will pay for the tab by using money charged to conventions that use Moscone Center, the same fund used to put on the fireworks show in San Francisco.

Overall, many city officials said the price tag was easily justifiable, just in the massive worldwide coverage of the event. News outlets from around the country and the world were caught up in the “feel-good” story, and for a city that relies so heavily on tourism as an economic staple, the event is sure to paint San Francisco in as positive a light as possible.

You can hear Phil Matier’s comments Monday through Friday at 7:50am and 5:50pm on KCBS All News 740AM and 106.9FM.

(Copyright 2013 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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