Bicol travel, food expo set mid-September in time for Peñafrancia fest

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LEGAZPI CITY, 6Aug2013 (PNA) – Bicol’s key players in tourism, food service and hospitality industries are set to gather together under one roof in September to promote their respective products and services during this year’s celebration of the fiesta of the Our Lady of Peñafrancia in Naga City.

The gathering — called the Bicol Travel and Food Expo (BITFEX), which will take place on Sept. 12-16 at the fully air-conditioned exhibit tent of the Avenue Plaza Hotel, a premiere boutique hotel in Naga City — will highlight the 11th Regional Tourism Congress, an annual gathering of the Bicol Regional Tourism Council (BRTC).

BITFEX will be the first-ever event of its kind in the region that will be held in time for the Peñafrancia Festival and spearheaded by the Pilipinas Broadcasting Network (PBN)-TV5 in partnership with the City Government of Naga and Avenue Plaza Hotel.

It is also in cooperation with the regional offices of the Departments of Tourism, Trade and Industry and Agriculture, and the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority and the BRTC.

Tourism officers, travel and tour agencies, local government units, hotels and restaurants, culinary schools, airlines and transportation companies — including suppliers, distributors, manufacturers, franchising companies, small-scale businesses on food and beverages, and other related businesses — are expected to join.

BITFEX will serve as the best venue for the exhibitors and sponsors to network and market their businesses and tourist destinations in Bicol, project director Glenn Barcelon, executive vice-president of PBN Inc., said here on Monday.

“This is our way of helping our entrepreneurs market their products and local officials promote the tourism potentials of their respective localities,” Barcelon said.

The event will also feature the regional tourism council’s Bicol Food Festival, the “Asenso Bicolano” — Livelihood, Entrepreneurship and Jobs Fair; Health and Wellness presentations; the Fiesta Naga, Fiesta Bicolandia Song and Dance Competition; and the Miss BITFEX Tourism Pageant.

There will also be a bartending competition with Club OK Specials, the 1st Bicol Acoustic Competition and the live coverage of the Our Lady of Peñafrancia Fluvial Procession, aside from raffles and other exciting activities designed to attract more people to visit and participate in this five-day event, according to Barcelon. (PNA)

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