BALANGA City- It is all systems go for this year’s nationally-awarded Pawikan Festival in Morong, Bataan, the provincial tourism office announced Monday.
The festival that implants caring for marine turtles was first runner-up in the country in Best Tourism Practices awarded by the Association of Tourism Officers of the Philippines (ATOP) and the Department of Tourism.
It was also declared second place in the provincial level all over the country by the Diliman Preparatory School in Quezon City.
Both recognitions were given during the 14th ATOP national awards in Legaspi City last October 4, 2013.
Architect Techie Banzon, Bataan tourism head, said they have finalized the schedule for the two-day event on November 30 and December 1, 2013 at the Pawikan Conservation Center in Nagbalayong, seaside village in Morong.
“May go-sgnal na ito ni Gov. Albert Garcia at ng kanyang ina na si Mrs. Vicky Garcia, Bataan Tourism Council Foundation chair, in coordination with the Morong municipal government headed by Mayor Jorge Estanislao,” the architect said.
The festival starts with a fun run at 5:30 in the morning of November 30 in Nagbalayong, followed by the opening ceremony at the Pawikan center.
The much-awaited event, releasing of hatchlings at the shore adjacent to the West Philippines Sea, comes in next.
Various activities were lined-up on the first day such as opening of the trade fair and different contests like kite flying, sand sculpture, poster-making, paddle painting, beach volleyball and cook fest, among some others.
A “capture those moment” photo contest follows with three winners getting P1,500; P1,000 and P700, respectively.
A cultural show and night patrol in chance encounter with marine turtles on the beach will surely tickle the imagination of visitors.
The second day, a Sunday, kicks off with a walk for a cause at 5:00 a.m. from Nagpaho Crossing to the Pawikan center.
After a program, pawikan hatchlings will again be released to the West Philippines Sea, formerly the South China Sea.
Street dancing competition, participated by 11 towns and one city, will surely excite especially first time visitors as dancers in pawikan-inspired costumes thump their feet on the sandy beach.
Bancathon Kayak race, cookfest follow. After awarding and recognition of partner agencies, a beach party where the roaring of the waves can be heard caps the celebration.