The sun and river illustrations etched on the center of the Paseo de Marianas are noticeably more alive and vibrant today, thanks to the fresh paint applied by volunteers from the Tan Siu Lin Foundation.
Saipan Soccer School’s Mae Ito said the painting project at the Paseo de Marianas was initiated by the Tan Siu Lin Foundation under the leadership TSL Foundation manager Maggie Sablan.
“We, the Saipan Soccer School staff, Shirley’s FC Women’s Team, and the Kanoa FC Men’s Team joined together to help complete the project in one week. This was our way of giving back to our community as well as giving a helping hand to our economy,” said Ito.
The project included cleaning and scraping off gums and trash and repainting the sun and river images.
“This way we revive the colors at PDM not just for the community but also for the tourists that come and visit our island.”
Jershwin Angeles, Ito’s colleague at the Saipan Soccer School, said everybody had a good time repainting the Paseo de Marianas, which they did from 9am to 3pm or 4pm for five straight days.
“It was fun cleaning and painting Paseo de Marianas. The scorching heat didn’t stop us. Me and the boys got to use the hose from the fire truck and were able to ride on top of it. The boys were so amused and had so much fun. People walking by told us we were doing a great job and that they are thankful to us for taking care of the area. I am very proud every time I pass by Paseo de Marianas, looking at the curb and pathway. I would like to thank everybody that participated, especially to Ms. Maggie Sablan and Ms. Becky Tenorio for taking care of us all the time.”
Marianas Visitors Authority managing director Perry Tenorio thanked TSL Foundation for the job, saying the cleanups and island beautification projects by community groups show a tangible commitment to making visitor satisfaction a priority.
“It’s an encouragement to the Marianas Visitors Authority to see so many businesses, civic groups, and individuals join the cause in making tourism their business. Our home in the Northern Mariana Islands is a lovely place to live and visitors pay hundreds or thousands of dollars to enjoy it, too. We thank all those who are helping to keep our islands beautiful and clean.”
Tenorio is strongly encouraging schools and non-profit groups to apply for funding support for cleanups through the MVA’s "Beautify My Marianas" campaign. “This federally funded grant will expire at the end of September, and we would like to exhaust the funding. In particular, we encourage eligible groups from Tinian and Rota to participate.”
Tenorio said applications for MVA’s "Beautify My Marianas" campaign are available at www.mymarianas.com.
MVA Destination Enhancement Committee chair Ed Arriola, for his part, lauded TSL Foundation for their work.
“The TSLF and its volunteer organizations did a great job of repainting the area. Currently the Destination Enhancement Committee is reviewing plans to further upgrade the PDM with visual, audio, end entertainment elements. With close to 1,000 hotel rooms surrounding this centerpiece, the private and public sector must seek new ways to enhance this heart of tourism. We also need to welcome and encourage new developments and investment in the CNMI. If we have a strong heart, as is Garapan, then the rest of the body will grow. The PDM Promoters, Inc. and the team at Division of Parks and Recreation also deserve our gratitude for the monthly maintenance.”