MORONG, Bataan – The Provincial Government of Bataan and the Bataan Peninsula Tourism Council Foundation Inc. (BPTCFI) chaired by Mrs. Vicky Sandejas-Garcia are now preparing various activities for the upcoming Pawikan Festival on November 30, to be held inside the Pawikan Conservation Center in the coastal barangay of Nagbalayong, this town.
Mrs. Garcia said that the annual Pawikan Festival, started in 2000 aims to raise public awareness on the importance of Marine turtles in our ecosystem. Thousands of visitors and environmentalists, including tourism officials, are expected to attend the occasion with the presentation of unique programs and activities.
Among the scheduled programs are the 5:00 am “Walk for a Cause” where participants and visitors can exercise and feel the fresh air along the clean and beautiful coastal area of Morong; to be followed by an opening program at 8:00 in the morning.
Also included in the line-up of activities are the ceremonial releasing of hatchlings to be led by Mrs. Garcia, Gov. Abet, Morong town Mayor Jorge Estanislao and other guests; street dancing competition where every town and the City of Balanga will field their own participants; environment fair; mural painting; body painting; boat painting contest; nature’s camp; quiz bee for high school students; paddle painting contest (for elementary students); sand sculpture contest (high school); Pawikan amazing race for college students and awarding ceremonies and beach party in the afternoon.
In 1999, the provincial government formed “The Bantay Pawikan Inc.,” composed of fishermen in the area who volunteered to take care and watch the pawikan with the help of the First Community-Based Conservation Program of Marine Turtles, UNDP-GEF-SGP, PRRM and the Provincial Government of Bataan.