STA.  ANANG  BANAK  TAGUIG  RIVER  FESTIVAL

MANILA, February 9, 2006 (STAR) A grand fluvial parade in honor and devotion to the patroness Saint Anne, the Sta. Anang Banak annual river festival rises from a wide spectrum of traditionally religious, yet culturally folk and mythical beliefs and practices that make up the unique ethnic base of the people once called "taga-giik". The faith tells the town’s patroness St. Anne gathered thousands of schools of Banak fishes in the river near Her church to give to the "taga-giiks" and the people in the lakeshore towns whose farmlands are drenched with the floods of the season and are hard up due to poor harvest from stormy seas.

"Karera ng mga Bangkang Lunday" (native boat race) This regatta depicts the race of fishermen from all over to get the biggest "banak" catch.

"Boys and Girls Festival Parade" a revelry of high school students going to the streets to hang or offer Fish cone streamers as gifts to happy house owners along the way.

"Banak Fish-Cone Tossing Ceremony" (tossing of fishcone streamers tied to bunches of balloons)-Led by the Mayor, the coterie of municipal and barangay officials, the parish priests and the townspeople, this symbolical tossing reminds people of the schools of banak literally jumping out of the waters to fill fishermen’s boats. This miracle fired the generosity that made fishermen toss their hoard to the people along the riverbanks who in return throw to the fishermen their offering of fruits and delicacies.

"Pagodahan" With the fish cone streamers aloft and flying, the revelers board their bancas, the bands start playing, and the Pagoda of the Patroness St. Anne leads the fluvial parade. From a special wharf behind St. Anne Church, the Pagoda goes up all the way to the mouth (wawa) of Laguna de Bay and returns down to Ususan. A fluvial parade of what it used to be; people from all cultural backgrounds coming in themed boats depicting their culture and stations in life to join the river festival in honor of St. Anne, the giver of the fish banak. There is exciting exchange of gifts called "Pasubo", people in the pagoda and the revelers at the riverbanks toss or throw to each other gifts of fruits and food items like boiled eggs, balut, itlog na maalat, and various kinds of native delicacies. Be alert or be surprised with an apple crashing to your head.

"Pandangguhan" Just as soon as the fluvial parade participants touch ground, the dancing procession of the image of St. Anne automatically starts, sending one and all to the sway of music or to catch more pasubo gifts from happy homeowners along the major streets of the parish. Devotees in native costumes dance to the music of the pandanggo or the wasiwas depicting how women light the riverbanks to guide their fishermen home. The general public is free to join the fun with or without the candles or lamps.

CITYHOOD ANNIVERSARY A week-long set of activities in celebration of Taguig’s proclamation as a highly urbanized city on December 8, 2004 capped by the taga-giik festival, a grand ethno-cultural Mardi Gras and lantern parade.

TAGUIG FOUNDATION DAY

Eight days of exhilarating events within d-day, April 25, the day Taguig was turned a Spanish pueblo of Manila in 1587, highlighted by:

• Taga-giik Festival

• The grand ethno-cultural Mardi Gras. The Taga-giik Festival is the swirl, the flight, and the roll of the "bilao" in the hands of the skillful "taga-giiks" in threshing rice grains from the chaff. School children, plain barangay residents, members of non-government organizations, cultural minorities, business and private culture groups of Taguig and other cities and municipalities of Metropolitan Manila come and join this exciting wave of people doing the ritualistic harvest and threshing dances of the old Taga-giiks.

• Mutya ng Taguig Pageant

• The Mutya ng Taguig (Pearl of Taguig), Mutya ng Turismo (Miss Tourism), Mutya ng Lahi (Miss Heritage), Mutya ng Sining (Miss Arts), and Mutya ng Kalinangan (Miss Culture) are selected from the prettiest of the 18 barangays of the town in one night rivaling world class beauty pageants. Pre-screened candidates undergo a month of rigorous rehearsals before they are presented in a lavish pre-coronation "Meet the Press" launch cum Swimsuit Competition, Talent Competition and Float Parade.

• Flurry of the Streamers

• Colorful themed streamers of business companies / sponsors announcing their support and participation in the foundation day activities flown all over Taguig. This show of unity are works of art, enthralling passers-by.

• Grand Foundation Day Parade

• Costumed municipal officials and employees, barangay officials and employees, members of non-government organizations, representatives of the business sector in a grand parade moving through the town’s main streets pumped up with military, police, school and private brass bands in full regalia.

• SMB Concert Parties

• The town’s young and young-at-heart all together in an all-evening dance and drink. Games and surprises. Popular show bands sponsored by San Miguel Beer and the town’s leading bistros competing for dancers’ attention.

• Pagiikan Mini Olympics

• Native games as they were never played before- habulan ng biik, hulihan ng itik, patintero, arnis, tumbang preso and many others brought to the level of the para-olympics.

• Forward Taguig Awards Night

• The year’s crème of achievers from all fields of endeavor toasted and awarded due recognition and surprises. Entertainment numbers are provided by named stars.


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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