Amid the threat of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid 19), the Negros Occidental provincial government launched the 27th Panaad sa Negros Festival on Tuesday, promising a celebration that is millennial savvy and eco friendly.
This year's festival, slated on April 20 26, is the first time to be staged under the leadership of Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson and Vice Governor Jeffrey Ferrer.
As for the (Covid 19) situation, we will continue preparing for Panaad 2020 and will not allow the condition, which may not exist in April, to dampen our spirits, Lacson said as he declared the formal launch of the annual event on Tuesday afternoon.
He, however, said the province is willing to cancel or postpone the festival if the need arises as it will not sacrifice the health of its people.
The health and well being of the Negrenses is my utmost concern and priority, Lacson said.
He said the festival theme The Future is Now! is apt as the province faces the future by reinventing itself to show the world that Negros is more than just sugar.
Negros is the place where you can succeed if you try, where a healthy economy can advance by what we make and innovate, he added.
Positioning the Panaad sa Negros as a millennial savvy festival, organizers introduced a QR or a quick response code in the promotional materials.
With one scan, we can link to our website and Panaad activities, Lacson said.
Provincial Tourism Division chief Jennylind Cordero, festival executive director, said hugot lines will be incorporated in the titles of some activities.
For instance, the Habulan ng Baboy will become Lagsun Ta Ka, Akun Ka, Babe, Lagsun Ta Ka and Akun Ka, Babe.
Lacson also said that during the festival, the province would strengthen solid waste management and provide guidelines to each local government unit.
Plastic bags will not be used in our pavilions, he added.
This year, he said, the festivities would focus on various aspects of tourism, including food, sports, culture, arts and heritage, adventure, and festival, as well as on eco tourism and sustainable tourism.
Dubbed as the Festival of All Festivals, the Panaad sa Negros showcases the 32 themed pavilions of each city and municipality of the province, including the capital Bacolod City, designed either as replicas of their own municipal or city hall, or their famous products.
In 2017, Negros Occidental was elevated to the Hall of Fame of the Pearl Awards after the Panaad sa Negros Festival was hailed Best Tourism Event Provincial Festival category for three straight years in 2014, 2015, and 2016.
The launch of Panaad 2020 was also graced by the Department of Tourism 6 (Western Visayas) Director Helen Catalbas, as well as Col. Romeo Baleros, director of Negros Occidental Police Provincial Office, and Col. Inocencio Pasaporte, commander of the Philippine Army's 303rd Infantry Brigade.
Source: Philippines News Agency