City of San Fernando
Kapampangan: Ciudad ning San Fernandu
|City of San Fernando|
Christmas Capital of the Philippines
Heart of Pampanga
Fernandino Ka, Kayabe Ka!
|Anthem: Himno Fernandino (Fernandino Hymn)|
|Founded||August 16, 1754|
|Cityhood||February 4, 2001|
|Named for||Ferdinand VI of Spain|
|Barangays||35 (see Barangays)|
|• Type||Sangguniang Panlungsod|
|• Mayor||Vilma B. Caluag|
|• Vice Mayor||Benedict Jasper Simon R. Lagman|
|• Representative||Aurelio D. Gonzales Jr.|
|• Electorate||190,977 voters (2022)|
|• Total||67.74 km2 (26.15 sq mi)|
|Elevation||33 m (108 ft)|
|Highest elevation||1,022 m (3,353 ft)|
|Lowest elevation||−2 m (−7 ft)|
|• Density||5,200/km2 (14,000/sq mi)|
|Demonym(s)||Fernandino (Male) |
|• Income class||1st city income class|
|• Poverty incidence|
% (2018) 3.61
|• Revenue||₱ 2,139 million (2020)|
|• Assets||₱ 4,841 million (2020)|
|• Expenditure||₱ 1,637 million (2020)|
|• Liabilities||₱ 1,391 million (2020)|
|• Electricity||San Fernando Electric Light and Power Company (SFELAPCO)|
|Time zone||UTC+8 (PST)|
|IDD : area code||+63 (0)45|
|Catholic diocese||Archdiocese of San Fernando|
|Patron saint||Saint Ferdinand III of Castile and León|
San Fernando, officially the City of San Fernando (Kapampangan: Ciudad/Lakanbalen ning San Fernandu; Filipino: Lungsod ng San Fernando), is a 1st class component city and capital of the province of Pampanga, Philippines. According to the 2020 census, it has a population of 354,666 people.
It is the regional center of Central Luzon and located 66 kilometres (41 mi) north of Manila, 73 kilometres (45 mi) east of Subic in Zambales, 58 kilometres (36 mi) south of Tarlac City in Tarlac, and 17 kilometres (11 mi) south of Clark Air Base in Angeles City.
The city is named after King Ferdinand VI of Spain and placed under the patronage of Saint Ferdinand III of Castile and León, whose feast is celebrated every May 30. Popularly known as the "Christmas Capital of the Philippines", the city holds the annual Giant Lantern Festival every December where large parol are displayed in competition. CNN has hailed the city as 'Asia's Christmas capital.'
The town of San Fernando was founded in 1754 from the towns of Bacolor and Mexico. The first church was built in 1755 with wooden walls and nipa roofing. The municipal tribunal was erected later in the year in front of the town plaza using durable materials and thatched nipa roofing. Don Vidal de Arrozal served as its first gobernadorcillo that year.
In 1796, after serving as gobernadorcillo the previous year, Don Ángel Pantaleon de Miranda retired to Barrio Saguin, from where he started setting up his hacienda in Barrio Culiat. The barrio was separated from San Fernando on the December 8, 1829 as the new town of Angeles, with the Los Santos Ángeles Custodios as titular patrons.
An expediente requesting the transfer of the provincial capital of Pampanga to San Fernando was signed on the August 6, 1852. Real Cedula 745, approving the transfer of the provincial capital of Pampanga from Bacolor to San Fernando, was signed on September 11, 1881. This transfer did not, in the event, materialize.
In 1878, actions were made to create the town of Calulut. This new town would be composed of Calulut and the neighboring barrios of Bulaun, Malpitic, Sindalan, La Paz, Lara, Saguin, Telabastagan, Balete, Malinao, Pulung Bulu, Panipuan, Macabacle and the caserio of Pau in San Fernando, and Panipuan, Acle, Suclaban and the sitio of Gandus in Mexico. This plan did not materialize, owing to strong opposition from the parish priest of San Fernando.
Governor-General Eulogio Despujol and Manila Archbishop Bernardino Nozaleda inaugurated the San Fernando railroad station, together with the Bagbag-Mabalacat stretch of the Manila-Dagupan Railroad, on February 2, 1892. The station was second only to Manila in revenues that year, and was thus the most important provincial station of the Manila-Dagupan Railroad. On June 27 of the same year, José P. Rizal made a stopover in the town as part of his mission to recruit members to the La Liga Filipina.
On September 1, 1896, the town was declared to be in a state of war despite its peaceful situation. Brigadier General Diego de los Rios arrived on December 2 to calm the revolution that started in Manila on August 30. General Ruiz Serralde took over Rios's post on June 26, 1897, to maintain the peace in San Fernando. The revolution was not yet at its height with occasional exchanges of fire in some places in Pampanga.
On June 26, 1898, representatives from all Pampanga towns, except Macabebe, gathered in San Fernando to swear allegiance to Gen. Maximino Hizon, who was the provincial military governor and representative of the revolutionary president, Emilio Aguinaldo. On October 9, Aguinaldo and his cabinet visited the town, and were welcomed with so much applause and enthusiastic cheering from the public. He proceeded to the convento which was served as the military headquarters at that time.
On May 4, 1899, Philippine revolutionary troops led by General Antonio Luna burned the casa municipal, the town church and several houses to render them useless to the approaching American forces. On June 16, due to the strategic location of the town, Aguinaldo himself led Filipino forces in the Battle for San Fernando. The plan to retake the town proved unsuccessful. Calulut fell to the Americans on August 9.
On August 15, 1904, the Pampanga provincial government was finally transferred to San Fernando from Bacolor, by virtue of Act No. 1204 signed on July 22, 1904. This was during the term of Governor Macario Arnedo and Municipal President Juan Sengson. The town of Minalin became part of San Fernando that same year. It would regain its political independence in 1909.
On January 2, 1905, the town of Santo Tomas was consolidated with San Fernando by virtue of Act 1208.
On August 12, 1904, U.S. Secretary of War William H. Taft visited the town to get first-hand information and gather ideas for the governance of Pampanga. Owing to the short notice, a bamboo pavilion was hastily constructed for his visit, where he was welcomed with a banquet for 200 people. Taft would later be elected President of the United States.
In 1921, the Pampanga Sugar Development Company (PASUDECO) sugar central began its operations. The company was formed in 1918 by large-scale planters such as José de León, Augusto Gonzales, Francisco Tongio Liongson, Tomás Lazatin, Tomás Consunji, Francisco Hizon, José Henson, and Manuel Urquico in the San Fernando residence of Governor Honorio Ventura as part of a plan to construct a locally financed central.
In 1932, the Socialist Party of the Philippines was founded by Pedro Abad Santos. Two years later, he created and headed the Aguman ding Maldang Talapagobra (AMT). The Abad Santos compound in Barangay San Jose became the focal point of the peasant movement.
On February 14, 1939, Philippine president Manuel L. Quezon proclaimed his social justice program before a gathering of farmers in front of the Municipal Government building.
In 1941, forces of the Imperial Japanese Army occupied the town and placed the municipal government under its supervision. The following year, thousands of Filipino and American prisoners of war walked from Bataan to the San Fernando Train Station in what will be known as the Bataan Death March.
In 1952, the town of Santo Tomas was separated from San Fernando.
In 1986, Paterno Guevarra was sworn in as officer-in-charge of the town after the successful People Power Revolution that toppled the Marcos dictatorship that same year. He was later elected municipal mayor. On December 31, 1987, former mayor Armando Biliwang was campaigning in Barangay San Jose to be elected mayor again when communist insurgents from the New People's Army fired gunshots in his direction, narrowly avoiding getting killed while his nephew was fatally wounded.
In 1990, Philippine president Corazon Aquino inaugurated the Paskuhan Village, the first Christmas village in Asia and the third of its kind in the world. The following year, Mount Pinatubo erupted after over 600 years of dormancy hurling a layer of ash and volcanic debris on the town.
On October 1, 1995, Typhoon Sibyl (Mameng) struck the town. It unleashed floodwaters and mudflows from Mount Pinatubo into the town. The Barangays of Santo Nino, San Juan, San Pedro Cutud and Magliman were severely damaged by lahar. The citizens of San Fernando rallied to save the town by raising funds to build the St. Ferdinand People's Dike. The Pampanga Megadike was constructed the following year, thus preventing further damage to the town.
Main article: Cities of the Philippines
On January 6, 1997, Mayor Rey Aquino and Senator Gloria Macapagal Arroyo launched the campaign for cityhood. On April 27 of that same year, Rep. Oscar Rodriguez filed House Bill No. 9267 creating the City of San Fernando.
In 2000, House Speaker Arnulfo Fuentebella and Senate President Aquilino Pimentel Jr. signed the approved city charter of San Fernando on December 4 and 13 respectively.
The town officially became a component city on February 4, 2001, following the ratification of Republic Act 8990 in a plebiscite from the previous day, making it the 99th city in the Philippines. Rey Aquino was the city's first mayor.
San Fernando is politically subdivided into 35 barangays. Each barangay consists of puroks and some have sitios.
|Climate data for City of San Fernando, Pampanga|
|Average high °C (°F)||30
|Average low °C (°F)||19
|Average precipitation mm (inches)||8
|Average rainy days||3.7||4.1||6.5||11.2||21.2||24.9||27.7||26.5||25.5||21.8||12.6||5.6||191.3|
Graphs are temporarily unavailable due to technical issues.
|Source: Philippine Statistics Authority|
The Roman Catholicism is the majority religion in the city; 80% of the population profess it. The city is under the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of San Fernando headed by Florentino Lavarias. Other religion includes Protestantism and Independent Christianity.The Iglesia Ni Cristo is the largest minority with 3% adherence. Islam is also evident in the city. The seat of the Archdiocese of San Fernando is located in the city, the Metropolitan Cathedral of San Fernando.
Being at the heart of the province, the city of San Fernando is home to 2 public markets, 39 banks, 48 lending institutions (investors), 38 pawnshops, 17 gasoline stations, 3 cinemas, 39 public and private schools, 7 hospitals, 13 dental offices, 9 hotels, 28 drug stores, 7 discos, 6 foreign exchange firms, 15 garment factories, 24 groceries, 7 supermarkets, 42 insurance companies, 16 security agencies and 70 restaurants. As the provincial capital of Pampanga, San Fernando also hosts regional offices of major Philippine government offices. SM City Pampanga, the first SM mall in Central Luzon, is a large shopping mall owned by SM Supermalls. SM also has two other malls: SM City San Fernando Downtown, along Consunji Street in the downtown; and SM City Telabastagan, along MacArthur Highway in barangay Telabastagan. Robinsons Starmills Pampanga or Robinsons Starmills, is a shopping mall owned and operated by Robinsons Malls, the second-largest mall operator in the Philippines. This is the first Robinsons mall in Central Luzon and in Pampanga, and it rivals SM City Pampanga. The mall is along Jose Abad Santos Avenue, at the boundary of San Fernando with the municipality of Mexico, and has a total floor area of 62,000 square meters (670,000 sq ft).
San Fernando serves as one of the agricultural processing centers of Central Luzon. It is a major rice-producing region and an important sugar-producing area. The Pampanga Sugar Development Company (PASUDECO) was once the largest private employer in Pampanga. It is a major sugar-processing plant in the region. Other manufacturing companies with offices in the city include Universal Robina, Zuellig Pharma, Nestlé Philippines, Petrophil, Mondragon Industries, JBTEC Flavors and Blends Inc. Asia Brewery, and Del Monte Corporation. Major food and beverage companies such as San Miguel Corporation, Coca-Cola, Pepsi Cola, and Pampanga's Best, have factories in the city.
Every year during Christmas season, the city becomes the center of production of hand-made parols, which is different from the usual ones for its intricate designs and the illusion of dancing lights, emphasizing the lanterns' vibrant colors. Also, every year around Christmas time is the Giant Parol Festival, where barangays of San Fernando come together for a friendly competition to see which lanterns are the best. The festival itself is held in the middle of December, and is originally held in the town of Bacolor until it was transferred to the city in August 1904, in an event called the Ligligan Parol in the Kapampangan language, which many believe to have never happened in that year. Following the formal transfer of the festival to the city in 1908, the Giant Parol Festival went on to be a tradition that has evolved with lanterns becoming larger and larger and the designs more intricate. Since then, it became a symbol of the city's unity and the resident's labor.
|January 31||Pedro Abad Santos Day|
|February 4||Cityhood Anniversary|
|Good Friday||San Pedro Cutud Lenten Rites|
|May 7||José Abad Santos Day|
|First Saturday of May||El Circulo Fernandino|
|May 30||San Fernando City Fiesta|
|September 10||San Fernando Women's Day|
|Around October to November||San Fernando Frog Festival (Kapampangan: Piestang Tugac)|
|Around November to December||Sinukwan Festival|
|December 11||Pampanga Day (Kapampangan: Aldo ning Kapampangan)|
|December to First Week of January||Giant Lantern Festival (Kapampangan: Liligan Parul)|
The San Fernando Heritage District covers the historic core of San Fernando, including barangay Santo Rosario and parts of barangays San Jose (Panlumacan), Santa Teresita (Baritan), Lourdes (Teopaco), Del Pilar, Santa Lucia and Santo Niño. These important sites are broken down under Heritage Houses, Historic Government Buildings, Schools, and Hospitals, and Historic Industrial Structures and Sites
Churches and other religious structures:
Historic government buildings, schools, and hospitals:
Main article: Sangguniang Bayan
This is the list of the mayors of City of San Fernando.
The City of San Fernando has four TV stations - UBC Channel 12, Infomax Channel 44, Central Luzon Television Channel 36 (CLTV36) and ABS-CBN TV-46 Pampanga. There are three radio stations, the 5 Kilowatt RW 95.1 FM of the RadioWorld Broadcasting Corporation of the Philippines, 91.9 Bright FM, owned and Operated by Archdiocese of San Fernando and the 2.5 kilowatt 92.7 Brigada News FM Central Luzon of the Brigada Mass Media Corporation.
Several local newspapers are published in the city which includes SunStar Pampanga, The Probe, Coffee Punch, Pampanga Times and the Observer.