Put up of old ‘Welcome to Baguio’ signage proposed

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City officials are earnestly requesting the City Buildings and Architecture Office (CBAO) to install or put up a replica of the old signage ‘Welcome to Baguio’ at the Upper Session Road rotunda as part of the September 1, 2021 Baguio Charter Day celebration to evoke a feeling of nostalgia among the city’s residents.

Under Resolution No. 255, series of 2021, signed by Mayor Benjamin B. Magalong, local legislators stated that during the present trying times due to the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, people need a little nostalgia to make them smile and the replica of the old ‘Welcome to Baguio’ signage at the Upper Session Road rotunda can remind the city’s residents of simpler times and of better days to come when the prevailing crisis shall have been gone.

The council pointed out that the aforesaid legislation intends to serve two major purposes, one of which is to serve as an added attraction for this year’s Baguio Charter Day celebration and it will subsequently evoke a feeling of nostalgia among many older residents of the city who have fond memories.

The body underscored that overall the revival of the old signage will eventually create new memories among the younger generation and help the older generation recall fond memories of the past while the signage was still in place in the strategic area.

According to the city councilors, nostalgia is an affectionate feeling one has for the past, especially for a particular happy time and it is a powerful emotion that can be conjured by events that bare a resemblance to past experiences in a person’s life.

Further, familiar music, smells and other reminders of the past activate nostalgic feelings and the same is now considered in the science community to have significant benefits for mental health.

The council noted that studies have shown that nostalgia can be used to combat loneliness and improve resilience and that it can also be used to boost creativity aside from providing a number of psychological benefits such as empathy, stress reduction, happiness and warmth.

During the 1960s, the council disclosed that there was a ‘Welcome to Baguio’ signage installed at the Upper Session Road rotunda which was featured in old postcards about the city.

The council stipulated that the CBAO is in charge of the installation of such signage, thus, the said office could put up the old ‘Welcome to Baguio’ signage at its old location for the entire month of September as part of this year’s Baguio Charter Day celebration to serve as a constant reminder for people to be able to look int the city’s rich history as the country’s undisputed Summer Capital for over a century now.

The council asserted that it is also important for the present and future generations of Baguio residents to learn about the old signage for them to establish their memories of the state of the city and compare it to its current state and its possible future in the coming years. By Dexter A. See

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