DAGUPAN CITY â€“ Paseo de Belen is now open fromÂ 5:00Â oâ€™clock in the afternoon toÂ 1:00Â oâ€™clock in the morning along the New De Venecia HighwayÂ untilÂ January 7Â next yearÂ to enableÂ everyoneÂ to see the cityâ€™s newest Christmas attraction featuring the 20 Nativity ScenesÂ set up by the different barangays in clustersÂ or solo.
FormerÂ Speaker Jose De Venecia Jr. and Mayor Belen T. Fernandez,Â along with Colegio de Dagupan President Dr. Voltaire Arzadon, Professor Caroline Jaraula of the University of the Philippines Marine Science Institute, the 2016 City Fiesta Executive Chairman Epee R. Rafanan and 2016 City Fiesta Hermano Mayor Dennis C. Canto,Â cut the ceremonial ribbonÂ formally openingÂ Paseo de Belen on Dec. 7.
The Paseo de Belen is one of the innovations initiated by MayorÂ Fernandez by bringing all the nativity scenesÂ in the barangays in one place instead of these beingÂ displayed in each barangayÂ as in the past.
This will enable everyone to have an easy access in viewing the different â€˜belenâ€™ art works of the people in the barangays.
â€œEach barangay hasÂ itsÂ own potential people who are good in arts and culture and Belen-making is our way of bringing their best out of it along with the guidance of their respective Punong Barangays. In fact, in one Belen,Â the mangers wereÂ designed by a former inmate and I am so proud when I watched them building their respective mangers,â€ said Fernandez.
On the other hand,Â De VeneciaÂ hailedÂ the collectionÂ of Christmas â€˜belenâ€™ in one place as one of the best achievements of MayorÂ Fernandez for the city of Dagupan.
â€œI am already turning 80 onÂ December 26Â and I have never seen in my entire life a collection of these â€˜belensâ€™ in just one place. This is another major accomplishment of Mayor Belen for the city of Dagupan,â€ said De Venecia.
Notably, the â€˜belensâ€™ are all made of indigenous and recycled materials.
During the launching of the ‘Paseo de Belen’, theÂ Balon Dagupan Childrenâ€™s Choir serenaded the crowd with their rendition of Christmas carols.
The carnival nearby the Paseo De Belen is also now open for families and guests to enjoy. (Joseph C. Bacani/CIO/Dec. 8, 2016)