I-Witness Account of the Quest for the Largest Human No-Smoking Sign in Albay
Last June 28, 2013 on a bright Friday morning Albayanos converged in Albay park and orderly marched towards the football field of the Bicol University main campus. The massive event was in participation to the quest, and vie for a first-ever attempt in the Philippines of largest human “NO SMOKING” sign, a campaign to be registered to the GUINNESS BOOK of WORLD RECORD.
It was participated by almost all employees of government offices in the province of Albay, including the three representative districts of the province .
The crowd gathered as early as 4:30 in the morning. Among the groups dreesed in (hooded) white were the first year college students of Bicol University, taking National Service Training Program, while the DECS and DEPED people wore red shirts. Those wearing black shirts were purely from the military, navy, and army. Majority of barangay officials in the province were also eager participants.
I got hold of the information that around 15 thousand participants were expected to make-up the logo and be able to set a world breaking record.
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A US peace corp volunteer in the College of Arts and Letters, Ms. Diane Klewitz, was too excited to register and join the crowd but after almost 3 hours standing under the scorching heat of the sun doing nothing decided to seek refuge in the shade. But the heat of the sun was too much for some of the enthusiastic participants that a few thousands finally decided to go home, due to hunger and thirst. Ms. Klewitz was one among who went home. Some even collapsed due to the unbearable heat experienced. Part of the organization were first aid teams to handle similar expected occurence.
There was somehow a failure in coordination and organization, some glitches, but with the presence of Gov. Salceda spearheading the program himself, the group was gathered thus coming up with almost 13+ thousands inside the logo.
I took all the pictures shown on the slideshow from the 2nd and 3rd floor of College of Arts and Letters overlooking the oval where the action was.
[Editor’s note: The aerial shot was provided and thanks to the Philippine Air Force.]