GAPAN City -- This city known for its Tsinelas Festival unveiled a giant ferris wheel-cum-parol and lighted an at least 100-foot tall Christmas tree on Saturday evening.
The Christmas lighting event dubbed “Masaya ang Pasko sa Gapan 2018” was led by Mayor Emerson “Emeng” Pascual and witnessed by thousands of local residents, visitors and guests at the city plaza on Tinio Street here.
“Kapag mahal mo ang taga-Gapan, alam mo sa puso mo kung ano ang dapat mong gawin na sasaya sila, sinasabi ko nga po palagi, ang paglilingkod sa Gapan, twenty percent ang utak na ginagamit ko, at eighty percent ay puso, mahal ko ang mga taga-Gapan,” Pascual told the audience.
Among those who attended the event were Vice Mayor Inocencio “Dodong” Bautista, members of the city council, fourth district Rep. Magnolia “Megan” Antonino, Cabanatuan City Vice Mayor Doc Anthony Umali, board member Eric Daniel Salazar, and ex-board member Tess Patiag.
Singer-comedian Janno Gibbs wowed the huge crowd with some of his hit songs.
The thousands of spectators erupted into wild cheers and loud applause when the two “giants” -- a 16-story-high ferris wheel and at least 100-foot tall Christmas tree were lit up around 7:35 p.m. followed by fireworks that illuminated the Gapan night sky for over five minutes.
A drone was also seen hovering over the site documenting the event.
Prior to the event, Pascual also led the lighting-up activity for the 700-meter-long “Christmas Lights Tunnel” that stretches from near the Bucana Crossing on Tinio Street going to the city public market.
Over a million Christmas lights joined together to form several rows of long lines to make a tunnel-like structure illuminating the area.
Pascual stressed that aside from having the “Merriest Christmas in Gapan,” the city is now considered the most peaceful in the province.
“Walang drug pusher sa amin, walang mabibiling shabu dito, maglibot ka dito, mamasyal ka, wala pong magiging problema, tahimik po dito,” Pascual proudly said.
Pascual said the construction cost for the giant ferris wheel reached P50 million.