MVA’s biggest signature event will be on Aug. 27 and 28
The Marianas Visitors Authority’s biggest signature event, the Taste of the Marianas International Food Festival & Beer Garden, will return this August, or during the reopening of the CNMI’s tourism industry to South Korean tourists under the Commonwealth’s pilot Tourism Resumption Investment Program, or TRIP.
In her presentation during the House Committee on Ways and Means’ hearing on the MVA’s budget last week, MVA deputy managing director Judy Torres shared the good news that the Taste of the Marianas will be back on Aug. 27 and 28.
The Taste of the Marianas, which is traditionally held in May, was canceled last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Starting last Friday, the CNMI has been downgraded to Level Green, which is the safest level in the five-color Community Vulnerability risk scale. Red, as the highest, is the least safe level.
Torres said there are also a number of events that are organized by other agencies that MVA supports, such as the Rota Coconut Festival and Bisita Luta.
Torres said although they continue to monitor the COVID-19 situation and follow the advice of the Commonwealth Healthcare Corp. and the COVID-19 Task Force in terms of social gatherings, there are a number of events that are already anticipated to be held next year. She said other events on their list may be confirmed as they move forward.
As for the Hafa Adai Tirow Pledge program launched last month by the MVA and the Saipan Chamber of Commerce, Torres said the vision is to develop, promote, and support the Hafa Adai Tirow spirit in the Marianas by promoting the indigenous Chamorro and Carolinian cultures.
She said this program is open to business organizations and individuals willing to take the action to preserve, protect, and promote CNMI’s indigenous cultures in the areas of language, art, tradition, history, and values.
For example, Torres said, a company may pledge to answer the phone with Hafa Adai Tirow or display local artwork at their office or serve local snacks such as apigigi and other local foods and, at the same time, educate the employees about local history.
“This is a very exciting program and we hope you will take the pledge,” she told House members.