About 11,000 athletes, their coaches and technical officials from the country’s 17 regions will converge at the Laguna Sports Complex in Sta. Cruz, Laguna as the 2014 Palarong Pambansa unfolds today.
Former President, now Manila Mayor Joseph Estrada will lead a mix of sports and movie personalities invited to the opening rites of the 57th edition of the annual sports event.
Laguna Gov. Jorge E.R. Ejercito Estregan said that Manny Pacquiao and Estrada would serve as guests of honor together with Technical Education and Skills Development Administration Chairman Joel Villanueva.
Pacquiao, who is an adopted son of Laguna will also serve as anchor in the torch relay along with Olympic figure skater Michael Martinez, young actor Enchong Dee, cager James Yap and Jericho Estregan, the son of Gov. Ejercito who leads the track and field team of De La Salle University.
Hosting the event for the first time, the local government of Laguna refurbished all 16 playing venues, including the 1,500-seater grandstand, rubberized track oval, football field, softball and baseball diamonds, archery and rifle range, air-conditioned basketball gym and an Olympic-size swimming pool.
Some 400 policemen and 800 medical personnel will also be deployed during the event.