MANILA, Philippines - Zambales Gov. Hermogenes “Jun’ Ebdane is focusing on sports tourism in his drive to put Zambales back in the map as the next go-to destination for both local and foreign tourists in the country.
“Part of my vision for Zambales is promoting an active lifestyle, particularly among the youth to help them veer away from vices, at the same time, the younger generation of tourists now is becoming more active and health-conscious, and Zambales offers the perfect topography for water, land, and trail sports,” said Ebdane a sportsman himself who is into scuba diving, skydiving, and shooting as his chosen disciplines.
As part of his integrated campaign for an active sports tourism program for the province, aiming among others to make Zambales a major sports hub in the region, the province has been hosting several national and international sports events, the biggest of which was the Central Luzon Regional Athletic Assciation ( CLRAA ) held earlier this year with over 9,000 young athletes, officials, and spectators trooping to Zambales. The event was held at the refurbished Zambales Sports Complex.
This weekend, the province will again be the center for a major event, the third Zambales Multi sports Festival from Nov. 9 to 11.
“ I personally chose the events included here and since I have been reading and hearing about kayaking tours in different places in the country, we decided to bring kayaking to Zambales and we will be putting up three kayaking facilities in strategic locations across the province,” said Ebdane, who was elated with reports that this weekend event has attracted participants from as far as Cagayan de Oro, Bohol, Mindoro, Batangas, Camarines Norte, and Laguna.
The Philippine windsurfing team is among those joining the 36K kayak marathon this Saturday, the event offers a tandem kayak as the top prize plus another kayak as a raffle prize to the competitors.
In the past, Zambales has also hosted a dragon boat race, a 4 x 4 off road challenge, a leg in the Padyak Pinoy race where foreign riders got a glimpse of what the province has to offer, and skimboarding races.