The provincial government of Pangasinan conducted on Monday a soft launching of its first provincial museum situated at the historic Casa Real here that boasts the rich history of the province and its people.
The provincial museum will officially be inaugurated on Sept. 8 and will be open to the public on Sept. 11.
Called Banaan, which means meeting together, the provincial museum is a product and contribution of different researchers, historians, cultural workers and bearers throughout the years, Provincial Tourism and Cultural Affairs Office (PTCAO) chief Maria Luisa Elduayan said in a press conference on Monday.
Elduayan said the entrance to the museum will be free for the rest of September this year in celebration of Tourism Month and the Philippine Creative Industry Month.
Visitors may visit https://seepangasinan.com/ website for the online reservation system
“We are opening guided tours from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. It will be a one-and-a-half-hour guided tour for 40 persons with (a) 30-minute interval to provide services to (a) number of visitors with a total of 340 per day,” she said.
The PTCAO created a museum services division for the daily operations. However, the ordinance to support the establishment of the museum and its operations including the fees is already in the works.
“We will see if it will still be free in the following months probably up to December. Just like other museums around the country, we need the entrance fees for sustainability but it will be a friendly rate and this is to help local tour operators by providing a destination for visitors coming to Pangasinan,” Elduayan said.
The museum is composed of 11 galleries with various artifacts, artworks, art installations, and interactive features while going around the historic Casa Real, which is the first seat of government in the province.
Technology was also integrated through the quick response codes scattered in every gallery for further details about the exhibits.
Elduayan said several of the artifacts were owned by individuals, families, and organizations like the Pangasinan Heritage Society and Pangasinan Historical and Cultural Commission who loaned it to the province.
She said some of the paintings in one of the galleries are for sale by local artists whose exhibits will run up to December.
Meanwhile, Governor Ramon Guico III said the museum is a project close to his heart.
“It is something I am proud of. Hindi matatawaran ang identity, kultura, history ng pagkatao ng Pangasinan (We cannot discount the identity, culture, history of Pangasinan). Infra (structures) are infra (structures) but these are intangible essential important things,” he said.
Guico said he wanted the museum experience of visitors to be more than just taking pictures but it will be a memorable experience for everyone.
“We limit the visitors per batch so it would be an intimate tour so that when there are questions it could be addressed properly,” he added.
The museum showcases the history of Pangasinan from the time of Urduja, the Chinese galleon trading, American colonialism, and World War II as it also features the outstanding Pangasinenses, including the national artists from Pangasinan.
It also highlights the culture of the province and its people through the local artists’ works. (PNA)