Tuesday, July 5, 2011

BSL cites river cruise as challenging ride

Repost from D' Dagupan Dream:

DAGUPAN CITY – The best is yet to come for Dagupan City!

Thus exclaimed Dagupan City Mayor Benjie S. Lim when he addressed guests to the blessing and inauguration of the river cruise port dubbed as  Daungan Ed Dawel in Barangay Bonuan Gueset last Friday, July 1.

Acknowledged as the father of the River Cruise, Lim recounted how his belief in tourism as a job-bringing vehicle and the Bohol’s Loboc River Cruise inspired him in pursuing his vision to make the city’s rivers as a tourist attraction – an agenda he had earlier tackled on his State of the City Address (SOCA) last June.

“It is just the beginning,” he said, calling the cruise project as “a ride” whose direction lies in the hands of Dagupeños. “The challenge is how to make the ride exciting, “ he pointed out.

He called on his city mates to support and promote the river cruise "because this is our shared responsibility." 

Before delivering his inspirational message, Mayor Benjie S. Lim introduced special guests Bayan Muna Representative Teddy Casiño and businesswoman Mary Generosa Manas and thanked Architects Butch Bernal, James Fernandez and Jojie Torio, the designers of the Daungan.

In her welcome remarks, City Tourism Officer Rose Teng-Mejia described the river cruise as a beacon of hope for Dagupeños.

“The river cruise as a tourist attraction is sailing high with accolades and is a proof that tourism in the [city] is gaining grounds,” said Mejia.

She said that “this is a reminder that Dagupan is a first class city,” She enjoined everyone in the crowd to patronize the cruise.

Lim, Casiño and Manas led the ribbon- cutting ceremony, formally opening the Daungan to the public.

Most Rev. Renato Mayugba, auxiliary bishop of the Lingayen-Dagupan archdiocese, blessed the port and led the prayer for its success in the coming years.

Attention was focused on Casiño, the guest speaker, who quipped that he barely made it to the program had not Lim dragged him to the place.

By referring to himself as “kaladkarin” (drag),  Casiño clarified  “kaladkarin lang ako sa mga magagandang proyekto” (I’m a drag only for good projects). He then lauded Lim and the city government for mounting a wonderful project.

Edrich Lloyd Antonio led the doxology followed by eight-year-old Fehreen Orosa who belted out “Ako’y Dakila”.

Cocktails were served after accompanied by Den Duo band’s performance which delighted the crowd. The guests were also given 10-minute cruise rides for free.

Also present during the inauguration were Councilors Bryan Lim, Maybelyn Fernandez, Dr. Jess Canto, Chito Samson, Red Erfe-Mejia, Liga ng Mga Barangay President. Emong Vallejos and Pederasyon ng Sangguniang Kabataan (PSK) President Chester Gonzales together with the city's First Lady Celia Lim, City Administrator Vlad Mata, department heads and barangay officials.

Launched last April 9, the River Cruise is one of the three environmental projects which earned for the city the coveted Likas Yaman Award for Best LGU-Initiated Environmental Project. (CIO – Rex Marion C. Laguerta)

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