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Road to 400: Valenzuela City Marks 398th Foundation Day

Valenzuela City 398th Foundation Day
A view of the 400-year-old belfry of the San Diego de Alcala Parish from Polo Park. The old historic town of Polo and its surrounding areas vital to the history of Valenzuela are undergoing restoration and conservation efforts as the city nears its 400th Founding Anniversary in 2023. (Public Information Office)

When a once-rural town known for its vast fields with people living from the bounties of the rivers was declared as an independent town called “Polo” on November 12, 1623, generations can tell how far it has grown as years passed. Now on its 398th Foundation Day today, Valenzuela City has evidently progressed into a more inclusive and liveable city – with sustainable developments ongoing as it nears its quadricentennial celebration in two (2) years.

Starting off today’s celebration is also the commemoration of the Feast Day of San Diego de Alcala with a morning mass at the San Diego De Alcala Parish in the old historic town of Polo attended by Valenzuela City Mayor REX Gatchalian, Vice Mayor Lorie Natividad-Borja, and city officials.

Declared as a Special Non-Working Holiday in the city under Proclamation No. 1240, the local government still continues all of its vaccination activities scheduled today with the call to register on-site at the Valenzuela City People’s Park Amphitheater to be able to also get the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine on the same day, taking advantage of the holiday.

The City also continuously conducts the COVID-19 vaccination of its Pediatric A3 population through VCVax Teen Edition, bringing in minors aged 12 to 17 years old from their schools as pick-up venues to the vaccination sites in a “hatid-sundo” scheme with its very own “Bakuna Shuttle”.

Dog owners can bring their fur babies to designated Dog Registration and Microchipping Caravan venues in the city, November 12. (Clinton Ramos/VC PIO)

Valenzuelano dog lovers are not left out as the City commences its microchip pet registration program called ValPets since it was postponed months ago due to the community quarantine restrictions. Starting in Barangay Malinta and Barangay Gen. T. de Leon this Valenzuela Day, the free Dog Registration and Microchipping Caravan will roll out in different barangays these coming months. Pet owners are encouraged to register at www.valpets.appcase.net to get their appointments.

Likewise, registered dogs received their free anti-rabies vaccine along with the microchip implants which serve as the dog’s permanent ID.

San Diego de Alcala Parish
Devotees and churchgoers celebrate the Feast Day of San Diego de Alcala today with a Misa Mayor at the San Diego de Alcala Parish, November 12. (Kevin Gatchalian/VC PIO)

Still keeping up with the spirit of celebration in its founding anniversary, Valenzuela City completes this day’s celebration with the Groundbreaking Ceremony of the new Pinalagad Elementary School – giving emphasis to building more inclusive and sustainable developments in the education sector.

“Ang Araw ng Valenzuela ay araw din ng tagumpay para sa mga mag-aaral ng Pinalagad. Dalawa na lang po ang paaralan sa ating lungsod ang masikip. Ito ang Pinalagad at Karuhatan East Elementary School na ngayon ay kasalukuyan narin na ipinapagawa… Wala na pong masikip na paaralan sa ating lungsod at ito po ay kasaysayan ng tagumpay sa ating lungsod,” Dr. Meliton Zurbano, Schools Division Office Superintendent of DepEd Valenzuela, said.

Also gracing the ceremony, Mayor REX also expressed his gratitude to Bates Marketing Corporation for donating 3,000 sqm. of the company’s property paving way for the construction of the new Pinalagad Elementary School.

“Sa pagbabalik eskwela ng mga estudyante next year, hopefully… Dito na sila sa bago nilang paaralan,” Mayor REX said.

The two (2) four-storey buildings will have 24 classrooms, an activity center/multipurpose building, computer laboratories, a cafeteria, an administrative office, and a faculty office.

Pinalagad Elementary School
City Government of Valenzuela officials lead the Groundbreaking Ceremony of the new Pinalagad Elementary School today, November 12. (Rodrigo de Guzman/VC PIO)

“Happy Foundation Day sa mga kapwa ko Valenzuelano! 398 years na po ang edad ng ating siyudad. Sa ating taunang selebrasyon, pumipili tayo ng mga proyekto na babago sa bawat Valenzuelano at ito ay ang pagtatayo ng bagong eskwelahan para sa Pinalagad,” Mayor REX added.

Liveable, inclusive, sustainable. 398 years may have passed in Valenzuela City’s timeline, but its tradition to the city’s development keeps up with the times of valuable community-building — a history that is ever important across generations and a “history in the making” Valenzuelanos will look back to in the future.

Happy 398th Foundation Day, Valenzuelanos!

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