MANILA, Philippines -- "We are on our mark, ready and set to go."
Those were the words of Negros Oriental Governor Roel Degamo in describing his province's readiness in holding the much-awaited 2013 Palarong Pambansa in Dumaguete City.
The week-long event, slated on April 21-27, will be held for the first time in this picturesque Western Visayas city, with Degamo promising participating athletes, coaches and visitors a Palaro they would never forget.
Clean, green, high-tech Palaro
"The determination of the province to host the Palaro has been steadfast," the governor said in the official signing of the Memorandum of Understanding between Negros Oriental and the Department of Education last Friday, March 1. "The Palaro is a huge milestone for us."
Degamo noted that Negros Oriental boasts of state-of-the-art sports facilities, playing venues within a 6.6-kilometer radius, safe and clean billeting areas, clean and potable water, uninterrupted electricity and citywide 4G internet connection.
Wushu, billiards to be played for the first time
"Napakatagal naming nag-intay sa Palarong Pambansa," Degamo shared as his province endured 19 years of waiting before finally landing the rights to host the annual gathering of almost 10, 000 participants.
DepEd Assistant Secretary Tonisito Umali said that the department has allotted Php 205-million in the run-up to the Palaro, with a part of it to be given to Negros Oriental as hosts.
"Maraming unang mangyayari sa Palarong ito," Umali added, also saying that wushu and billiards will make their first appearance in the high school division while futsal will be played for the first time in the elementary level.
Also present in the activity were DepEd Secretary Br. Armin Luistro, DepEd Region 7 Director Dr. Carmelita Dulangon, Provincial Engineer Franco Alpuerto and Provincial Administrator Jose Arnel Francisco. - Rappler.com