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Baguio’s 103rd birthday

BAGUIO CITY – With the backdrop of sceneries depicting old Baguio onstage at the Baguio Convention Center during the 103rd birthday of the city, Mayor Mauricio Domogan challenged the citizenry of being active participants in solving the city’s problems: peace and order, environmental, garbage woes, among others.

He exhorted everybody to help look for solutions and build a better Baguio, to be “active players,” as being just “spectators and observers at the sidelines” would not gain the city anything.

“We are parts with different functions,” we should realize that being individualized workers builds disunity, he added.

Though he commended Baguiotes’ resiliency amidst disasters, he pointed out that we should be united and thoroughly used up for service, not wait for anybody to solve our problems.

Both the mayor and Baguio Day speaker Saint Louis University President Fr. Jessie Hechanova’s message are anchored on the theme, “Sustaining a Sense of History, Community and Continuity.”

Fr.Hechanova spoke of partnerships and collaborative efforts between and among the multi-cultural communities in Baguio to solve the city’s problems. He spoke of education, tourism, employment, manual work, socio-economic development, environmental integrity, migration, political stability and social enterprise for the well-being of the community.

He however emphasized the need for the right and responsible attitude, moral values and such as properly directed towards service to society.

Fr. Hechanova also talked about urbanization and congestion, thus the concept of the Baguio-La Trinidad-Itogon-Sablan-Tuba-Tublay (BLISTT) which SLU, the institution he represents has initiated. SLU has a college in Bakakeng and shall move towards a housing project in Sablan, a follow-through towards decongestion, he said.

The Baguio Day program awardees were also honored during the occasion: Dr. Rowena Aquino Pascual for Professional Service, Engr. Susan Nalog-Anganga for cooperatives, retired teacher Elena Badival, Rebecca Domogan and Rosario Cordero for community service, Patricia Anne Gallardo for Public Service, and Rebecca Lim Nulud for Arts and Culture.

The awardees were stringently screened from twenty nominees by the Society of Outstanding Citizens Organization of Baguio (SOCOB) Council, headed by Reynaldo Bautista.

A parade followed the program where costumed participants from the different institutions played out different eras of Baguio’s history. The Ibalois of Baguio, World War II, Japanese, American forces and Guerilla era, the construction of Kennon road, the establishment of the Baguio City National high School, post liberation years, known personalities of the city, the fashion of the 50’s, the activism of the 70’s, the 1990 earthquake and re-building efforts, up to today’s growing city.

The barangays, Ms. Baguio contestants, schools and socio-civic groups also joined the parade, from the Baguio Convention Center, down Session road, Harrison road up to the Melvin Jones grandstand at Burnham Park. –juliegfianza

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