Rebranding Murcia

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By Adrian Bobe

A-Listed!

Tuesday, July 22, 2014


THERE is more to the municipality of Murcia than just being a quaint town with its old-fashioned charm.

Travelers may have seen it as a highway connecting Bacolod to the breezy Don Salvador Benedicto (DSB) or to the festive San Carlos City that is a gateway to Cebu, but the quiet town of more than 70,000 people is getting a “re-packaging” and “facelift” to boost its image as a first-class municipality with numerous attractions apart from Mambukal Resort.

Commissioned by Mayor Andrew Montelibano, I and my creative team of photographers and brand managers were tasked to “re-brand” Murcia and position it as among the best tourism destinations in Negros Occidental.

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And with great pride, I am letting my avid readers take a peak of what is inside my bag of tricks, this time, to elevate Murcia to the ranks of popular places worthy of a visit and appreciating big time.

Far from the serious “Above All, Service” theme that has been adopted as the official slogan of the town for nearly five years now, we are launching the “Good AM: Rise and Shine Murcia” campaign. As good as good one can get, Murcia will highlight, among others, its “good food, good government, good citizenry and good international partnerships.”

“Good AM,” or “Good Andrew Montelibano” and yes, as in, “Good Morning,” are complemented by the words, “Rise and Shine” at the end. These are just the exact verbs to inspire townsfolk to join the local governance in taking Murcia to greater heights by being side by side in providing jobs, economic reforms and services to the people.

With the help of artist Bobby Aguirre, we have launched Murcia’s official theme song in Murcia National High School yesterday. The jingle will be played in schools and will set local programs and initiatives to good vibes. The LGU will adopt the theme song as part of the Monday programs. Entitled “Rise and Shine!,” the danceable beat is fast becoming a hit among teachers and students.

“Good AM! Village” for teachers and government employees will be launched before the year ends as well. Principals and teachers of the town witnessed the deed of donation ceremonial signing despite the ecstatic weather yesterday. To be built in Barangay Minoyan, “Good AM! Village” will establish more than 300 houses.

Talking about structures, the iconic public plaza that is visited by thousands of townsfolk during market day weekends is getting a modernization job, too. Huge welcome banners will lure tourists to stop their cars for some “group selfie” shots. A museum that will house donated mineral rocks from the US will also be completed early next year. Beside the Murcia Museum are gazebos with coffee tables. Art installations will also perk up plaza visitors. As of the moment, perspectives are being rushed to treat locals and tourists alike just in time as the Tinabuay Festival opens in December.

Collateral materials like magazines and newsletters are being produced as well. The distribution is not limited to locals but also to different cities and municipalities in the province as well. Right now, my team of videographers is completing video materials to complete documentaries about the charming town. This will be played in sisterhood agreements currently being finalized among different provinces in Asia.

One principle keeps us motivated for Murcia: It is also a stop-over! More than just a gateway to the picturesque DSB or an access road from Cebu to visit the City of Smiles, Murcia is one place to drop by, too. A dip at the hot springs in the appealing Mambukal can be greatly complemented by a visit in the dairy farm, a quick swing at the Golf and Country Club, and an afternoon delight at the well-arranged plaza.

Given more time, a random visit at the Immaculate Conception Parish will entice you to stay and maybe, visit again next time.

Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on July 22, 2014.

Lifestyle

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