Poro Point launches the "Festival of Lights"
Posted: April 20, 2012 | Category: SCTEX
If Baguio City has Panagbenga or the Flower Festival and Clark hosts the Hot Air Balloon Festival, Poro Point will be launching its summer festival dubbed as “Sillag – The Poro Point Festival of Lights”.
Sillag is an Ilocano word which means moonbeam or illumination from the moon. The festival, initiated by the Poro Point Management Corporation (PPMC), a subsidiary of the Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) is intended to promote the 6-hectare lighthouse property as a vital component of an Integrated Tourism Complex.
“This is part of BCDA’s endeavors to change the landscape of Central and North Luzon,” said Arnel Paciano D. Casanova, BCDA President and Chief Executive Officer, underscoring BCDA’s efforts to develop tourism and investments in the north. “Not only will we see beautiful and modern cities, we will also see business and employment opportunities that will eventually translate to the upliftment of the lives of our countrymen.”
For his part, BCDA Chairman Felicito C. Payumo identified Poro Point Freeport Zone as the country’s gateway in the North.“The holding of the Sillag or La Union’s Festival of Lights in Poro Point will play a major role in not only drawing tourists but promoting the Poro Point Freeport Zone with its seaport and airport as the country’s magnet for investments and wealth generator in the North,” Payumo said.
In line with the BCDA’s 20th Anniversary Celebration, Sillag will be launched on April 28, 2012 with activities that will surely highlight the province’s rich history and tourist destinations. Next year, it will be scheduled proximate to the Panagbenga Festival and Hot Air Balloon Festival to promote synergy and complementation with the other economic zones under the BCDA group.
PPMC Chairman Ives Q. Nisce pointed out that in order to ensure the success of Sillag, various public and private groups were tapped as partners in the undertaking.
Among the partners of the Poro Point Management Corporation (PPMC) include: the local government of the Province of La Union led by Governor Manuel C. Ortega and San Fernando City Mayor Pablo C. Ortega; Thunderbird Pilipinas Hotels and Resorts, Inc.; Poro Point Agro Industrial Development Company Inc.; Poro Point Industrial Corporation; Department of Tourism; Department of Trade and Industry; Philippine Information Agency; Philippine Coast Guard; Philippine Navy, Philippine Marine; Philippine National Police; Philippine Air Force; Philippine National Red Cross; Bureau of Fire Protection; La Union Hotels, Resorts and Restaurants Association; Chamber of Commerce and Industry of La Union; La Union Tourism Council; La Union Conventions and Visitors Bureau; La Union Tourism Officers Association; Bauang Tourism Council; San Juan Beach Resorts Association and; BCDA.
Nisce added that Sillag is but a staging point for a much bigger objective to promote the entire province of La Union.
“Through Sillag, PPMC aims to attract domestic and foreign tourists to encourage business and commerce in the Poro Point Freeport Zone, in San Fernando City and the rest of the province,” Nisce said.
Florante S. Gerdan, PPMC president and chief executive, said, “This festival will surely mark Poro Point’s distinction among tourist destinations in the country. With this, we hope to give light and inspiration to our fellowmen facing difficult times.”
The Poro Point Lighthouse, a distinct historical landmark in La Union, will be the focal point of the festival. The Poro Point Lighthouse serves as a beacon for ships and boats plying the sea at night. Similarly, the Poro Point Freeport Zone is envisioned as the Beacon of the North by catalyzing the socio-economic development in Northern Luzon. The lighthouse is considered as the perfect symbolism of the Poro Point Freeport Zone.
Sillag will open with an Air Show featuring ultralight aircrafts and paragliding exhibitions. A children’s show featuring clowns, magicians, jugglers and face painters will also be brought to light to create a festive atmosphere. Simultaneous with the children’s show, there will be Signing of Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) at the Lighthouse area. The MOA covers the Adopt-a-Lighthouse Project between Poro Point Management Corporation and the Philippine Coast Guard.
The Philippine Marine Corps Drum and Bugle Team and Silent Drill Platoon will perform after the lighthouse ceremonies.
The festival will be highlighted by a Lantern Fluvial Parade or parade of illuminated and decorated boats from various participating agencies/companies. The parade of boats represents boats coming back to shore guided by the light emitted by the lighthouse.
“It will be a ceremony worth watching, a symbolism of the Poro Point’s guiding light as it helps illuminate the northern region as the next tourism and investment destination in Asia,” Casanova said.
Hope lanterns will be released after the parade. The lanterns symbolize PPMC’s collective hope for the socio-economic development of the Region. These will be sold to government agencies, business firms, schools, various groups and organizations as well as individuals. Proceeds will go to the beneficiaries of PPMC’s Corporate Social Responsibility Program, PPMC HELPS, which include among others the impact communities of the Poro Point Freeport Zone and Gawad Kalinga.
After releasing the Hope Lanterns, a concert featuring the 6Cycle Mind will be presented.
A pyromusical show will cap the bright and colorful lights festival.