LAOAG CITY – The Provincial Government of Ilocos Norte (PGIN), through the Ilocos Norte Tourism Office (INTO), officially launched the 2018 “Paskua mi Ditoy” with the annual Capitol Light-up, December 10, drawing thousands of locals and tourists to the Capitol grounds and captivating netizens who watched it online.
“Paskuami Ditoy” is a Christmas tourism brand showcasing the unique ways that Ilocanos celebrate the holiday season. At the same time, it heralds the homecoming of migrant Ilocanos who look forward to spending yuletide in their hometowns.
This year’s Capitol Christmas Tree Light-up features an installation inspired by the architecture and design of the San Agustin Church in Paoay, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The second level of the installation provides visitors a view of the Capitol building and its surroundings, while the first level puts the traditional belen at the center stage.
Spectators witnessed Light-up with admiration, including Louise Santiago, who expressed, “It’s a little bit overwhelming… I never thought that the province could put up something like this.”
Streamed live on Facebook, the first and grand showcase of the Paoay Church-inspired façade also garnered warm comments from online viewers. “Watching from Canada. Wow, bongga sa ganda,” said Bella Corpuz; while Edgar Simeon hailed it “another unforgettable one.”
At the Light-up ceremony, Senior Provincial Board Member (SPBM) Matthew Marcos Manotoc reminded Ilocanos to enjoy the holidays while sharing their blessings to the community. He had celebrated his 30th birthday on the 9th. Meanwhile, Vice Governor Angelo Marcos Barba urged the people to cherish the gifts of family, unity, and Christ as savior.
The program marked the beginning of a month-long celebration of “Paskua mi Ditoy.” (Blessing Angel Agliam / PGIN-CMO)
Photo: Paoay Church-inspired façade at “Paskuami Ditoy” (photo by PGIN-CMO)