IN PHOTOS: The vibrant street parade of Panagbenga Festival 2015
Brightening the streets of Baguio
Thousands of locals and guests gathered around Session Road to witness the Street Dance Parade which started from Panagbenga Park down to Burnham Park Athletic Bowl. All this on Saturday, February 28. (IN PHOTOS: Panagbenga 2014)
Performers captured the culture and colors of Baguio with their outfits, props, tunes, and choreography.
Some incorporated the traditional Cordilleran costumes eten (native skirt) and bahag (g-string), while others used local, natural materials like dried grass and bright flowers.
Themes and motifs range from nationalistic to the more artistic. Puffed sleeves and wide-brimmed hats were worn by participants playing the drum and lyre, while some wore wings and sombreros covered with sunflowers. One marched dressed as the barrel man, an iconic wooden souvenir from Baguio City.
“I have been visiting Baguio for the Panagbenga for 4 years already,” Cynthia Marrero, a photographer and traveler, said. “Every year, there is something new to see. It’s amazing how Baguio tops itself.”
The parade ended in the Athletic Bowl for the participating school’s field demonstrations.
Two decades and blooming
This year’s Panagbenga (which is literally translated from the Kankana-ey as “blossoming of flowers”) bears the theme “Across 20 years of blossoming together”, a testament that regards the Panagbenga event as a part of Baguio culture since its humble conception in 1995.
The festival ran for two weeks then, and gradually extended the following years until the whole month of February was scheduled to accommodate all events of the festival.
February is an ideal time of the year to visit Baguio because the weather is comfortably cool, and it is between the Yuletide Season and Holy Week. (IN PHOTOS: Panagbenga 2013)
Among the events celebrated since the Panagbenga opening in February 1 include street dancing, lyre and drum competition, kite flying challenge, variety show, and fireworks display. – Rappler.com
Ivan Jim Layugan is a writer based in Baguio City. His essays appeared in local and national publications. He just started his postgraduate studies on language and literature at the University of the Philippines, Baguio.