Pangasinan wins bid to host 2012 Palarong Pambansa

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Thursday, November 17, 2011


LINGAYEN, Pangasinan -- The province of Pangasinan will host the Palarong Pambansa 2012, the Philippines' biggest annual scholastic athletic competition participated in by elementary and high school students from public and private schools.

Pangasinan bested three other provinces, including Laguna, Occidental Mindoro, and Marikina City after a final presentation was held on Thursday before the Palarong Pambansa 2012 technical committee at the Department of Education (DepEd) central office.

Provincial Sports Director Modesto Operana made the announcement around 2 p.m., saying the Deped evaluation team considered the provinces' preparedness of its playing venues, billeting schools, and the main venue or sports complex.

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Francis Allan dela Cruz, an evaluation team member that visited Pangasinan in September, thanked the province for bidding for next year's Palaro.

"I was already here in the first Palaro hosting in 1995. I am awed with the overwhelming improvement of the place. Thank you for bidding. Seeing this place, this is one of the most ready places to host the Palaro," he said.

As expected, the news was received well by the Pangasinan delegation, which was led by Governor Amado Espino Jr. and Vice Governor Jose Ferdinand Calimlim Jr.

Provincial Board secretary Verna Nava-Perez was the one tasked to present the briefing.

Governor Espino is expected to officially announce Friday the good news during the opening ceremonies of the 3rd Milo Little Olympics National Finals at the NRSCC.

Pangasinan first hosted Palarong Pambansa in 1995, during the term of Fidel V. Ramos, who was born in Asingan.

Espino, then a retired police officer, was the director of the Pangasinan Police Provincial Office (PPPO) at that time.

Espino was then the Palarong Pambansa Task Force Commander which, among others, supervised the construction of the different facilities inside the Narciso Ramos Sports and Civic Center (NRSCC).

A track oval and grandstand was constructed inside the Virgen Milagrosa University Founation in San Carlos City, while an Olympic size swimming pool was built in Dagupan City. A multi-purpose sports gymnasium was likewise constructed in Urdaneta City.

All these facilities remain in good condition.

Espino started renovating the facilities at the NRSCC when he first became governor in 2007 with the aim of making Pangasinan a major sports center in the Philippines. (Liway C. Manantan-Yparraguirre/Sunnex)

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