America in 3D: Bridging Iloilo City with the USA
America once again experienced the warm welcome of the Ilonggos as they officially open America in 3D: : A Road Show in Diplomacy, Development, and Defense – a 3-day event aimed at strengthening the friendly ties of the Philippines and the United States of America. The event will run from March 2-4 with most of the activities held at SM City Iloilo in Mandurriao District.
These are some of the highlights in America in 3D:
America in 3D here in Iloilo had its kickoff program at the activity center of SM City Iloilo and was attended by U.S. Deputy Chief of Mission Leslie Bassett, Iloilo City Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog, and Governor Arthur Defensor, Sr.
Ms. Bassett reiterated the importance of US-Philippine relations in terms of trade, education, culture, and defense. This was also highlighted by our local officials in their own remarks. Mayor Mabilog also appreciated the efforts of the US Embassy in promoting the values of brotherhood and friendship between the two nations.
Also included in the first day of events at SM City is the awarding of the winners in America in 3D Kabataan Challenge on Facebook – a writing competition aimed at giving “opportunity for Filipino youth to speak their minds and share their vision about how they can work together with their American peers for the greater good (US Embassy).”
Later in the afternoon of March 02, another event was held at Hotel del Rio. This is the signing of Memorandum of Understanding between Iloilo City and the US Embassy regarding the launching of Cities Development Initiative (CDI). Cities Development Initiative (CDI) is a project focusing on higher education, economic growth, investment opportunities, and energy. The program launch was initiated by US Deputy Chief of Mission (DCM) Leslie Bassett and United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Mission Director Gloria D. Steele, together with Iloilo City Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog, and was witnessed by Senator Franklin Drilon.
Back at SM City Iloilo, Ilonggos are entertained by artists performing at the Activity Center. The audience was stunned by a breath-taking hip-hop performance by Philippine All-Stars. Other Pinoy singers expected to perform are Erik Santos, Jed Madela, and Arnel Pineda.
Also, one of the highlights of the event is the performance of the U.S. Navy’s 7th Fleet band “The Orient Express”. The crowds are mesmerized by the beautiful voice and the energetic dance moves by Musician 3rd Class Gabriel Brown. Joshua Haney, a Philippine-American member of the band, entertained the crowd by his rendition of the Black Eyed Peas’ “Bebot”. (Note: Videos on The Orient Express performance will be added soon)
Booths are open for the public to inquire about visa application, studying and doing business in the US, and also information about USAID. Talks on visa application and studying in the US are also presented to the eager crowds. Seminars on stopping human trafficking and meeting the millennium challenges like eradicating poverty are also included in the scheduled events. In addition, mangrove farming in Arevalo and repainting of some public schools are activities organized by the US Embassy staff.
Definitely, America in 3D was a success! And one’s thing for sure, Uncle Sam will miss the City of Love!Tags: Iloilo City