DAGUPAN CITY– Mayor Belen T. Fernandez, wearing red t-shirt and denim pants, led the city’s Filipino-Chinese community in welcoming the Year of the Monkey in a night of cultural presentation at the city plaza on Friday following a motorcade along Dagupan’s downtown area.

The different Chinese schools in the city participated in showcasing the time-honored cultural tradition of the Filipino-Chinese community whose elders came to the city to seek opportunities for prosperity, luck and fortune more than a hundred years ago.

“Today’s festivities reinforce the values and qualities of our forebears that contributed to Dagupan’s dynamic economy. Through the years we have handed down many practices and traditions which we are now teaching our children, and these are solid testaments that we have managed to remain as a strong family because we hold these values and traditions close to our hearts,” said Fernandez to the Filipino-Chinese community.

Fernandez, herself identified with the Filipino-Chinese community, encouraged everyone to continue building a community of caring, sharing, and daring for others’ sake.

“Caring and sharing mean being compassionate to the plight of others and lending a hand to help others. Daring is making sacrifices for the interest of the country that many of our forebears have already called home,” added Fernandez.

Joining the celebration were the different Filipino-Chinese community organizations and schools like the Dagupan Chinese Musical Association headed by Willy Rillera, Filipino-Chinese Amity Club-Dagupan Chapter headed by Andy Sy, Dagupan Filipino-Chinese Community Association headed by Edwin Cuña, Pangasinan Universal Institute, Divine Word Academy of Dagupan, and Oakridge International School and the Panda Volunteers Firefighting Brigade. PNA / northboundasia.com