DAGUPAN CITY — The “Paseo de Belen” featuring different nativity scene versions will return as one of the grand attractions of the Dagupan City Fiesta slated the whole month of December, coinciding with the Yuletide Season.
City Councilor Marcelino Fernandez, who was designated by Mayor Belen Fernandez as “hermano mayor” of this year’s fiesta, said this would just be the second year that the “Paseo de Belen” would be part of the month-long celebration.
It was the “Belen de Barangay” which formed part of the fiesta since 2007 when Mayor Fernandez was still vice mayor of Dagupan. However, the nativity scenes were only displayed in front of barangay (village) halls.
Councilor Fernandez, who is president of the Federation of Barangay Councils, said 22 villages had so far signified their intention to put up their own version of the nativity scene at the “Paseo de Belen” on Jose de Venecia Expressway Extension in Barangay Lucao in full view of passing motorists.
All nativity scenes will be made of indigenous materials sourced out in Dagupan and will be judged by a panel from various civic and religious sectors, including business executives from Manila.
The winning entries would be announced during the Barangay Night of the Dagupan City Fiesta at the city plaza, said Fernandez.
He said the “Paseo de Belen” as well as the Dagupan City Carnival and Fair adjacent to its site would be simultaneously opened on December 1.
The Dagupan Trade Fair as well as the Food Strip would be put up sometime this month along Galvan and Zamora Streets, he said.
The “Pawil Dagupan” (Comeback Dagupan) will likewise be retained to welcome and honor overseas Dagupenos who will come to have a vacation in Dagupan during the Christmas season.
Meanwhile, a giant Christmas tree in front of the city museum will be lighted on December 5.
Fernandez added that among the additional features of this year’s Dagupan Fiesta is the Search for Mr. and Mrs. Dagupan as well as Miss Dagupan, the winners of which would be crowned on December 26, the natal day of St. John the Evangelist, patron saint of the fishermen.
A mass baptism for children will be held at the Saint John Metropolitan Cathedral during the fiesta. PNA-northboundasia.com