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Iloilo shines with Banaag Festival 2018’s amazing light show

Banaag Festival

Fresh from being hailed as the Philippines’ Best Municipal Festival at the recently held 2018 Pearl Awards, the highly anticipated 14th Banaag Festival in Anilao, Iloilo drew excited tourists from all over the country who came to witness the much talked about Festival of Lights and the spectacular culminating program that set the night ablaze with beautiful dancing flames last October 31.

Following the symbolic lighting of the torch, which was lead by Iloilo 4th District Congressman Ferjenel “Dok Ferj” Biron, along with Anilao Mayor Lee Ann Debuque and Anilao Vice Mayor Matet Debuque, this year’s Banaag Festival presented fierce and more enchanting cultural presentations of eight competing tribes vying for the coveted Banaag Festival Dance Drama Competition Championship.

Banaag Festival

Lighting of Torch with Senator Cynthia Villa and Iloilo 4th District Congressman Ferjenel “Dok Ferj” Biron, along with Anilao Mayor Lee Ann Debuque and Anilao Vice Mayor Matet Debuque

Banaag Festival is a cultural tradition in Anilao, Iloilo which was inspired by local sentinels during the Spanish era who guarded bamboo watchtowers and warned residents of incoming pirates by lighting the torch as a signal to flee. Thus, the torch became a precious symbol of unity for the Anilaonons, and this beautiful burning light has become the source of pride and inspiration for the people throughout the years.

In the recently concluded 19th Pearl Awards of the Association of Tourism Officers of the Phippines – Department of Tourism (ATOP-DOT) held in Cagayan De Oro earlier this month, Banaag Festival bagged the First Place as Best Tourism Festival (Festival Category, Municipal Level), earning for this Anilaonon tradition its much deserved title as the Philippines’ Best Municipal Festival.

Banaag Festival

A quick media press conference with Iloilo 4th District Congressman Ferjenel “Dok Ferj” Biron, along with Anilao Mayor Lee Ann Debuque and Anilao Vice Mayor Matet Debuque

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Event

Banaag Festival 2018 ignites with more spectacular performances

Banaag Festival

“The Philippines’ Best Tourism Municipal Festival” – More people are expected to flock to the charming town of Anilao, Iloilo this month to witness for themselves the much-awaited and talked about festivities of what has been officially proclaimed as the Best Tourism Municipal Festival in the country — the Anilaonon’s very own Banaag Festival.

Also known as the Festival of Lights, the Banaag Festival is a cultural tradition in Anilao, Iloilo which was inspired by local sentinels during the Spanish era who guarded bamboo watchtowers and warned residents of incoming pirates by lighting the torch as a signal to flee. Thus, the torch became a precious symbol of unity for the Anilaonons, and this beautiful burning light has become the source of pride and inspiration for the people throughout the years.

In line with Anilao’s 79th Foundation Anniversary this year, the 14th Banaag Festival brings in more reasons to celebrate after being recently proclaimed as the Grand Winner of Best Tourism Event (Festival Category, Municipal Level) in the 19th Pearl Awards of the Association of Tourism Officers of the Philippines-Department of Tourism (ATOP-DOT) held in Cagayan De Oro earlier this month.

Fresh from this win, the 2018 Banaag Festival boasts of fiercer and more spectacular performances as the week-long festivities culminate in the Dance Drama Competition among eight competing tribes who will vie for the championship with their own unique stage interpretation of the town’s rich history. How these tribes will use the symbolic torch light in their colorful performances is definitely worth waiting for.

Gracing this year’s Banaag Festival to lead the symbolic lighting of the torch on October 31 is Iloilo 4th District Congressman Ferjenel “Dok Ferj” Biron, who joins the Anilaonons’ celebration and commits to giving national awareness to this great victory among the people in his district. He will be joined by Anilao Mayor Lee Ann Debuque and Barotac Nuevo Mayor Braeden John Biron in igniting an even brighter and culturally enriching future for Anilao and for the whole province of Iloilo as well.

Here are the remaining activities and schedule for this year’s Banaag Festival: Opening Program and Banaag sa Langit (October 29, 7:00 p.m., Anilao Municipal Centennial Park), Balik-Anilao and JAD Excellence Awards (October 30, 7:00 p.m., Anilao Municipal Centennial Park), Dance Drama Competition (October 31, 6:00 p.m., Anilao Covered Gym)), and Thanksgiving Mass (November 1, 2:00 p.m., St. Rita of Cascia Parish).

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Iloilo shines with Banaag Festival 2018’s amazing light show
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