Mati City’s Centennial Park

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Mati City, capital of Davao Oriental, has one of the most beautiful City Halls I know.

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What makes it particularly charming is the small park beside it, a park which publicly celebrates the town’s history.

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The Mati Centennial Park, inaugurated in 2003, celebrates the town’s 100 years since it was founded.

 

Aside from the clock tower, the park’s most distinguishing feature is the Pathway of Leaders, rows of busts of the town’s former mayors.

 

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The park is dominated by a clock tower gate, flanked on both sides by two of Mati’s purported founders

 

 

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Captain Prudencio Garcia was, according to online sources, Mati’s founder and ‘politico-military head’ and was made so in 1861. He is said to have founded the town with Juan Nazareno in 1903, though online sources do not elaborate on this.

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Juan Nazareno is simply described as ‘a gentleman’ and ‘Captain Prudencio Garcia’s companion.’

Like most towns in Mindanao, Mati’s history remains largely unwritten (I am hesitant to trust online sources). It would be lovely to pick up a book and read the lives of these statues and busts

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The marker on the clock tower indicates this was a purely local government effort. The local government of the time should forever be credited for this project.

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The park has an old Weeping Fig at its center. The tree with its many roots adds an air of ancientness to the park.

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Just across the street from the park is an old round ball. there are also old houses nearby.

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The city hall is walking distance from Mati’s famous Baywalk¬† (now more beautiful since I last saw it), which overlooks the gorgeous Pujada Bay.

Kidapawan should have something like this!

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