BAGUIO CITY – Acting Mayor Daniel Farinas has no doubts that tourism in Baguio is back where it was before typhoons Ondoy and Pepeng left it devastated, last month.
This was the pronouncement of Vice Mayor Farinas during last week’s regular media forum. Farinas, was acting mayor for a week, following Mayor Reinaldo Bautista, Jr.’s trip to Hanyu, Japan.
The vice-mayor said several associations have decided to honor their earlier commitments and their conventions shall push through in the city; the Philippine Mine Safety and Environment Association, (PMSEA), Fil-Am Golf Invitational Tournament, and the National Convention of Philippine Institute of Civil Engineers. Other convention organizers have cancelled their reservations in the city due to concern as to road safety to and from the city.
Other Lakbay-Aral participants have also come back, the vice mayor also assured city residents, local and foreign tourists. They have seen that the city is in good shape, and has good practices to share, vice mayor Farinas added.
Employment is not wanting, Farinas said, though with expansions of multi-national companies in the Export Processing Zone Authority some Baguiotes employed there have relocated to Malaysia, or to local expansion places such as Clark and Subic.
Education is also a big come-on, with sterling performances of graduates from Baguio schools in board exams, he said.
Tourism is still the main income earner of the city, thus the need to attract local and foreign tourists, the vice mayor further stated.
From the office of Councilor Perlita Chan-Rondez, Council Committee Chair on Tourism, Special Events, Parks, and Playground, it was learned that there are lined-up activities for the next months, for December; the lighting of the Baguio Christmas Tree, Diwa ng Pasko, Baguio Film Festival, City of Lights Competition, New Years Eve Ball and a Free Christmas Concert.
Activities for the New year would include programs in the city parks, while for February is the Baguio Flower Festival; with grand street and float parades, Chinese New Year, and Philippine Military Alumni Homecoming. March would be filled with holy week celebration, and Summer Vacation, fluvial parade and other religious events. April comes with the lucky summer visitor, strawberry delights and other festivals including that of neighboring town, La Trinidad. –juliegfianza