Press Release
February 3, 2009

Gordon hails success of Intramuros History Town
as daily visitors hit 6,000

The crowds that came in droves to Intramuros History Town on the weekend of Jan. 31-Feb. 1 was perhaps the largest since it opened in December 2008.

According to the official tally of the Best of the Regions Secretariat, about 4,875 local and 1,179 foreign tourists came daily to see the "Best of the Regions" Showcase featuring Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) and Central Mindanao. The total number of visitors who came to the venue is pegged at more than 80,000.

After having pushed for and supported the revival of Intramuros History Town, Independent Senator Richard J. Gordon said the return of thousands of tourists should compel more Filipinos to take more stock in their heritage and identity as Filipinos.

"We chose to start the 'Best of the Regions' showcase with ARMM and Central Mindanao not only because it was the best seller in the previous Best of the Regions when I was Secretary of Tourism, but also because it compels us to take stock in our people's Muslim heritage," said Gordon.

He welcomed the news that because of its sheer crowd drawing power, the ARMM and Central Mindanao Best of the Regions showcase would go on an extended run until Feb. 16.

"It's time that our people in Metro Manila see Mindanao through the 'Best of the Regions' Showcase and discover with their own eyes that its people and their culture are truly worth being proud about," he said.

"Seeing Mindanao without the blinders created by news stories of conflict and kidnapping will do more towards forging better understanding that will lead us to achieve peace and prosperity for our entire country," he added.

In a bid to further promote the ARMM and Central Mindanao's "Best of the Regions" showcase, Gordon announced he will host an Ambassador's night at 6:30 pm, on Feb. 8 at the Clamshell 1, Intramuros History Town Philippines, Manila.

Gordon said that, after opening the eyes of Filipinos, he hopes to open the eyes of the entire world to the beauty of Mindanao.

A symbolic Tree Planting Ceremony will start off the Ambassadors night where the letters of hope and peace written by 100 children contained in a Lakub or Vessel of Peace will be planted along with trees.

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