Olsim: Strawberry Fest bore fruit

WE WERE all smiles in the city of golden friendship that night. During the 13th Association of Tourism Officers of the Philippines – Department of Tourism (Atop-DOT) Convention and Pearl Awards night, which was held last week in Cagayan de Oro City, La Trinidad’s Strawberry Festival 2017 was awarded with a Special Citation as one of the Best Tourism Events (Municipal level) in the whole country. This is despite its first time to respond to the association’s call.

The annual Pearl Awards, which is being organized by Atop in coordination with the Department of Tourism, is the only national-level tourism awards activity in the country. The event intends to recognize the tourism best practices of local government units (LGUs) and tourism-related establishments.

This year, more than a hundred LGUs participated in the screening process for various tourism projects, programs, and activities. La Trinidad’s Strawberry Festival, the lone representative from the Cordillera Region, was chosen as one of the top finalists for the best tourism events category, and eventually recognized during the Pearl Awards night.

The 2017th edition of the La Trinidad’s Strawberry Festival interestingly bore the theme: “Sustaining the fruits of La Trinidad’s Agro-eco tourism” – a well-timed message for the La Trinidad community to adopt a tourism-conscious approach in sustaining agricultural gains, and environmentally sound advocacies. Last year’s Strawberry Festival also revived the baking of a giant strawberry cake as a tribute to the town’s Guinness world record feat in 2004, and maintained innovative events such as the “non-motorized” float parades, “multicultural” community gathering, and the colorful mix of agriculture, culture, and future. It was definitely one for the books – indeed, as recognized by the country’s premiere tourism organization.

The flattering accolade should be rightfully received by the La Trinidad community in general; it is for the farmers who produce our strawberries and other agricultural products, our participants who made a more vibrant festivity during the parades and competitions, and, our sponsors and passionate supporters. Of course, credit fairly goes to the working committees of the festival including the barangays who labored and sacrificed their time and energy, even after the working hours, so that we can have a festival to be proud of. We congratulate the Strawberry Festival Executive Committee headed by the SF ExeComm chairman, Mayor Romeo Salda, and composed of our Municipal Vice Mayor and the rest of the Municipal Councilors. Indeed, the honor should not diminish our drives but should inspire us all (the whole community) to do more for our town.


We have already restarted our preparations for the La Trinidad Tourism Week 2018 celebrations after some weeks of grieving for our brothers and sisters who were tragically claimed by a recent disaster. We have to move on as they say, but we have to do so with sensibilities and awareness that our future actions, like these events, can be potential tools to help those who were affected. For more information regarding the said events, please join the following two Facebook pages: La Trinidad, Tourism, Culture and Arts FB page, and SK La Trinidad FB page.


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