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Notes from a Diary of a Round Brown Girl: Special Guest Writer Actress Thushari Jayasekera.

I go to a variety of events around town and this weekend I was invited to attend a formal appreciation Gala event. On Saturday September 29th, 2012 I walked into the elegant lobby of the LAX Westin located 5400 W. Century Blvd., L.A., CA 90045.

Organizers were underway with guest check-in for the inauguration of the Dr. Jose Rizal Monument Gala Appreciation Dinner. Just that morning, the unveiling of the monument had taken place at 9:00am in the Carson International Sculpture Garden located at 701 East Carson St., City of Carson, CA 90749 by the Filipino American Community in Southern California. The statue unveiling was free and open to the public and the gala night tickets were sold for $60.00. (Please click on the photos to view them regular size).

I entered the banquet hall to see beautifully decorated tables, a band set up and rows of chairs for the dignitaries. The ladies were dressed beautifully and most of the gentleman wore the traditional barong. Though I’v seen that type of shirt, I only learned the name this stylish piece of clothing as the barong that morning. The event was emceed by Lydia Solis & Noel Omega. The opening of the Gala consisted of Parade of Colors, The American National Anthem sung by Sara Mislang, the anthem of the Philippines sung by Sam Santiago, Invocation by Rev. Robert Victoria, the Welcome address by Mon’Chito’ G. Mandap, Chairman, JPRMM and brief remarks by Hon. Jim Dear, Mayor of City of Carson.

I love learning about other cultures and I was delighted to learn about Dr. Jose P. Rizal and the Monument Movement at the “In Spirit of Unity and Patriotism”

I met some community members that I had met before. I enjoyed the delicious food and the entertainment. The band Bits n Pieces provided dancing music for the evening. I had fun talking to the other guests at the table where I was seated and even learned a few words of Tagalog.

Dr. Jose P. Rizal is the national hero of the Philippines. He was a primary proponent of peaceful reforms during the Spanish Colonization in the 1800s. Dr. Rizal was a scholar, prolific writer, an anthropologist and traveled to many countries in Asia and Europe.
Monuments of Rizal stand in many other parts of the world and he continues to be recognized globally for his leadership to bring freedom, liberation, and justice through peaceful means to all people. This is the first Rizal monument in the State of California. The Rizal Monument is a gift from the people of the Philippines to the people of Carson, CA. The Unveiling of the Rizal Monument is a Joint Project of Various Filipino-American Organizations with the Support of the City of Carson, California and of the Philippine Consulate General Los Angeles.

Editor’s Note: Thank you to the JPRMM for the invite and specially to Ms. Lydia Solis. Also thank you to Ms. Mary Ann Omega from the Filipino American Chamber of Commerce LA for the additional gala tickets.

Source: Diversity News Magazine

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