Saturday, December 8, 2007

Christmas Under-the-Sea Wonderland Wows Indonesians

PASKO-SA-GENSAN TOUR. Gen. Santos City Mayor Pedro Acharon, Jr. gives Major General Jenderal Tni. Djoko Susilo Utomo, Chairman of the Border Committee of the Republic of Indonesia a walking tour of the different pavilions and other features of the oval plaza which has been converted into an under-the-sea wonderland, the centerpiece of the Pasko-Sa-Gensan 2007 festivity which formally opened this week. The Indonesian visitor who was with his wife and 30 others also witnessed and enjoyed the DANCE FUSION Competition at the oval plaza stage. They were in the city to attend the 26th Chairman's Meeting of the Border Committees with their Filipino counterparts.
FIRST LADIES. Gen. Santos City First Lady Dr. Rose Acharon with the wives of some of the members of the Border Committee of the Republic of Indonesia at a Welcome Dinner hosted by Mayor Pedro Acharon, Jr. on December 4, 2007 at the Sydney Hotel prior to their tour of the Pasko-Sa-Gensan Grand Reef festivity at the Oval Plaza. To her left is the wife of Major General Jenderal Tni. Djoko Susilo Utomo, head of the delegation. They were in the city for a joint border patrol meeting with their Filipino counterparts.

Friday, December 7, 2007

26th Chairman's Meeting of Indo-RP Border Committee in Gensan

INDON BORDER COMMITTEE CHAIR. Major General Jenderal Tni. Djoko Susilo Utomo, Chairman of the Border Committee of the Republic of Indonesia is welcomed at the Gen. Santos City International Airport by Mayor Pedro Acharon, Jr. upon his arrival on December 4, 2007 from Manado, North Sulawesi on board their own army plane. He and 35 members of his team are in town for the 26th Chairmen's Conference of the Border Committe members from both countries at the East Asia Royale Hotel. BORDER TALKS. GenSan City Mayor Pedro Acharon, Jr. addresses the 35 members of the Indonesian Border Committe during the Welcome Luncheon he tendered for them at the Babes Bar of the East Asia Royale Hotel on December 4, 2007. They and their Filipino counterparts from the Philippine Navy and Philippine Army are in the city for their joint country 26th Chairman's Meeting on December 5-6.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Simultaneous Lighting of City Ushers in Pasko Sa Gensan 2007

In a never before seen spectacle in General Santos City, on December 3, 2007, the whole stretch of Pioneer Avenue including the Gen. Paulino Santos, Sr. Park up to the large expanse of the Carlos P. Garcia Park (Oval Plaza) simultaneously burst into a sparkling exhibit of muti-colored lights signalling the start of the city's annual yuletide festival.

After leading a countdown among the 5,000-strong crowd at the oval plaza stage prior to the light-up, GenSan City Mayor Pedro Acharon, Jr. formally announced the commencement of the month-long PASKO-SA-GENSAN 2007.

A dazzling fireworks display then ensued , illuminating the sky and eliciting screams of delight among the spectators, mostly members and supporters of the ten school bands which participated in the TUNOG TAMBOL, TUNOG LIRA Drum & Lyre Competition conducted earlier that afternoon.

Pasko-Sa-Gensan which started in 2003 under the administration of Mayor Acharon has been growing in grandeur and scale annually. For this year, the festival took on a theme which played around the city's fame as the country's Tuna Capital and on the resiliency of its people who have managed to survive a series of unfortunate events the past 5 years or so. Thus, the theme "KULAY PASKO ANG DAGAT NG BUHAY" was conceptualized as the rallying point for the festivities.

According to the mayor, "Not only will our displays, decors and activities remind us of the blessings we have gotten from the bounty of our seas but will also help instill in us the spirit of hope as symbolized by the vibrant colors of the sea creatures so much present in the festive hues of the Christmas season."

Indeed, if one goes around the city, colorful marine flora and fauna are displayed side by side with symbols of Christmas while the oval plaza takes on the character of a Grand Reef with a Giant Seaweeds Christmas Tree in the center.

Pavilions built by participating schools RMMC, NDDU, HTC, MSU and Golden State College are scattered near the tree, each one adopting a certain marine creature as its mascot.

Other than that are the Coral Carnival Pavilion (carnival rides), the Fisherman's Wharf Mini Trade Fair and Food Bazaar and the Seashells Pavilion (Kids Playground).

Nightly events are also scheduled at the Oval Plaza Stage with the city's FM Radio stations outdoing themselves with their concerts, dance parties and cultural programs.

Everything culminates at the same venue with a Closing Program on December 21 and a thanksgiving concert on December 22 dubbed as Pamaskong Bigtime Aginaldo-Pasasalamat Concert sponsored by the City Mayor's Office and ABS-CBN Socssargen. (GenSan CMO/avel manansala)