LA TRINIDAD, Benguet – Mayor Romeo K. Salda issued Executive Order No. 1, series of 2019 declaring Monday, March 18, 2019 as a special non-working holiday in the municipality to pave the way for the conduct of the 38th edition of the town’s Strawberry festival wherein some of its highlights will be done on the said day.
The local chief executive underscored that by declaring March 18, 2019 as a special non-working holiday in the municipality, it will pave the way for residents and visitors alike to bond together in the celebration of the festival and the promotion of the town’s major product, strawberry, which is being frequented by thousands of visitors daily.
“There is a heightened public interest and participation in the various government-led and community supported events of the festival, thus, the need to declare March 18, 2019 as a special non-working holiday in the municipality,” Salda stressed.
It can be recalled that on March 13, 20004, former President and now House Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo issued Presidential Proclamation No. 585 declaring March 18 as a special non-working holiday in La Trinidad in celebration of the annual Strawberry festival.
On the other hand, Mayor Salda also issued Executive Order No. 2, series of 2019 that lifted the ongoing implementation of the town’s number coding scheme from March 18-22, 2019 to accommodate and give better mobility to the tourists who will be visiting the municipality during the staging of the highlights of this year’s Strawberry festival.
Among the activities that were lined up on March 18, 2019 include the civic parade from the Cordillera office of the Commission on Audit (COA-CAR) in Km. 6 up to the municipal gymnasium in Km. 5, the ongoing agro-industrial fair and strawberry lane, the Strawberry festival main program and the multi-cultural presentations coupled with the traditional rituals.
Salda issued Executive Order No. 3, series of 2019 which directed the implementation of temporary traffic routes in view of the conduct of Strawberry festival activities on March 18 and 23, 2019.
On March 18, 2019, the south-bound portion of Halsema highway from the COA-CAR regional office to the municipal hall will be closed while the north-bound portion will be open to 2-way traffic from 6 am to 9:30 am only.
On March 23, 2019 or during the conduct of the drum and pyre parade and non-motorized float parade, all lanes of Halsema highway will be closed to traffic from 6:30 am until the end of the competitions which is projected at 12 noon wherein Puguis public utility vehicles will be advised to take alternate routes for them to be able to continue bringing people in and out of the municipality.
Mayor Salda appealed to the motoring and commuting public who will be temporarily inconvenienced during the twin occasions to be extra patient to prevent the occurrence of any altercation with their fellow motorists so that they will be able to enjoy the town’s festival mood on the said dates.
The Strawberry festival formally opened last March 4, 2019 and will come to a close by the end of the month in time for the start of the campaign period for the local positions in the May 13, 2019 mid-term elections.
Photo from La Trinidad Strawberry Festival Facebook Page