I. Norte celebrates 194th founding anniversary, opens Capitol to the public

Following the success of last year’s ‘Open Capitol’ program, the people of the province of Ilocos Norte join in unity for the second time on February 2, as the provincial government celebrates its 194th Foundation Anniversary.

Gov. Imee R. Marcos said she will personally lead the celebration on Thursday where over 10, ooo people are expected to grace the celebration.

“There are many reasons to celebrate— good governance, more investments moving in, our tourism industry booming, and public- private partnership greater than before. In other words, we have more reason to celebrate because of these positive developments,” Gov. Marcos shared.

On Thursday, an ecumenical prayer will be held at the provincial capitol grounds at exactly 8 o’clock in the morning followed by a flag raising ceremony which will be attended by local government officials of the 2 cities and 21 municipalities of the province, and other guests from the public and private sectors.

Following the opening program will be the blessing of the newly established lobby offices of INVEST and PSWD inside the provincial capitol, the Museo Vivo Garden, and the La Tabacalera Ilocano Lifestyle Center which have undergone a major facelift since Gov. Marcos was sworn into office in 2010.

Another activity will be the ‘Open Capitol’ where all the government offices inside and outside the provincial capitol will be literally open to the public. The purpose of the activity is to familiarize the Ilocano people as well as the visitors of the equitable public service that these offices provide.

At the Aurora Park, a flurry of stalls will be available where the public may have their pictures taken on a photo booth, body arts like permanent tattoos and face painting, a freedom wall where graffiti artists may sketch or illustrate their love for the art, and more booths which are intended to entertain the public.

“We are expecting thousands to be here during the celebration and we made sure that the public will not be bored,” the Sanggunian Panlalawigan Office said, the agency in- charge of the foundation activities.

As a part of the anniversary, the provincial government in partnership with Northwestern University will also conduct a job fair at the Laoag City Amphitheater where job seekers will have the opportunity to get employed here and abroad.

To culminate the whole day activity, a merriment dubbed as ‘Ragragsak sa Aurora Park’ will ensue at 4 o’clock in the afternoon where the public will witness a mini concert and a ‘showcase- your- talent’ show. (Florante A. Nicolas, PGIN- CMO)