Huwebes, Oktubre 13, 2016

Secretary Teo To Boost Tourism in Bacolod City, Philippines

President Duterte Graces The 37th Masskara Festival 

Tourism Secretary WandaTeo

Stakeholders are rallying behind the Department of Tourism (DOT) to boost 'inclusive tourism' in Bacolod City and other localities in the area, in the spirit of the 37th MassKara Festival graced by President Rodrigo Duterte recently.

Travel and tour operators, hoteliers, restaurateurs, and community leaders joined officials of DOT, as well as local government unit officials in affirming their support for the government’s 'tourism-for-all' program spearheaded by Tourism Secretary Wanda Teo.

During the colorful festivities, the stakeholders pledged not only to work for the benefit of the poor rural folk but to make tourism more accessible to persons with disability, handicapped, elderly and pregnant women.

The consensus dramatizes yet the Filipino resiliency that gave birth to the MassKara festival almost four decades ago when economic depression hit the sugar capital of the country, said DOT Asst. Sec. Gwen Cads-Javier.

City of Bacolod in Negros Ocidental where the famous Masskara is being held.

Javier lauded the local tourism sector, as well as the Bacolod City Council, for the successful staging of the MassKara festival, which has become a tourism icon that caters to international and domestic tourist.The DOT official assured that a wide array of projects will reach Bacolod City, known as the City of Smiles.

'These projects include infrastructure along destination routes, ecotourism, agri-aqua tourism, adventure, river boat tours and international cruise tourism in Bacolod, Silay, Talisay and Bago,' Javier said. She also encouraged tourism-related local establishments to get accreditation by the DOT-Negros Island Region to assure tourists of world-class standards.

'MassKara festival reflects our never-ending spirit of optimism. We anticipate the festival for more color, pageantry and excitement. The festival has likewise become an occasion to reminisce and to reunite as a people here and from other countries,' Bacolod City Mayor Evelio 'Bing' Leonardia.

Pres. Duterte is the only President ever to grace the spectacular MassKara opening rites.
'I had visited Bacolod when I was mayor of Davao City. I believe MassKara has evolved into one of the more colorful festivities in the country.  It has its own identity different from other festivals,' Duterte said.

CNN has recognized MassKara as 'One of the 12 Best Things to Do in the Philippines” while National Geographic proclaimed it as “One of the 10 Must-Do Festivals for the Month of October in the World.' (VerGarciaBlogs)

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