Al Cinco de Noviembre
BY ACE BALBOA
It was another occasion for Bago City to look back into the glorious past of Negrenses.
The city celebrated the 121st Al Cinco de Noviembre with various activities. The event commemorated the historic bluff that freed the island of Negros from the Spanish rule in 1898.
The Nov. 5 celebration started with the wreath laying ceremony at the monument of Gen. Juan Araneta. Leading officials in the rites were Mayor Nicholas Yulo and Vice Mayor Ramon Torres.
Also attending the commemorative activity were city councilors as well as department heads of city offices and national agencies, war veterans and family member of the late revolutionary leader.
Sharing his thoughts on the occasion, Mayor Nicholas Yulo called on fellow Bagonhons to sustain the dream of the heroes of 1898. It will be for us and the next generation to bring the battle to the next phase for we are facing today battles for survival and progress, he said, adding: “At this time, we need more heroes and heroes with the same ideals and vision that of our brave ancestors to end the fight victoriously. The call is upon us to act now in order for us to grow and prosper.
Mayor Yulo further said that the commemoration is an occasion for city residents to “rejoice and celebrate anew Tan Juan and his men who valiantly stood up against the tyrants.”
Their patriotism and selflessness make them fitting role models worthy of esteem, reverence and gratitude. It is through their ideals that we are able to follow the straight path towards true freedom and sustainable progress, the mayor further said.
A civic-military parade followed the wreath-laying ceremony with the annual ‘Sigabong sang Mga Kanyon’, a street competition participated in by 12 merged groups representing the 24 barangays of the city.
The competition was judged based on their re-enactment of the historical event and the loudness of the blast of their cannon.
The tandem of Barangays Balingasag and Poblacion topped the contest with Barangays Calumangan and Busay, placing second; and Don Jorge Araneta and Lag-asan, third. The winners received P50,000, P30,000 and P20,000, respectively.
In the 11th Fancy Drill contest, which was held in the afternoon, Enriqueta Montilla de Esteban Memorial High School of Pulupandan bested seven other schools from various parts of the province for its grand slam triumph. The school also won the Best Street Performance award.
Placing second in the event held at the Manuel Y. Torres Memorial Coliseum and Cultural Center was STI West Negros University, which also received the Best in Production Number prize, while Lopez Jaena National High School was third and took the Best in Uniform award.
The three top Fancy Drill groups received P25,000, P20,000 and P15,000. Other winners were Ramon Torres National High School, Best Narration; Cadette Col. Diona Mandadero of Domingo Lacson National HS, Best Platoon Leader; Lopez Jaena National High School – best in uniform; and DLNHS, most disciplined group.
The Fancy Drill special awardees each received P5,000.
Instructors of the Philippine Military Academy have served as Fancy Drill contest judges since 2012.
Another highlight of the celebration was the Interschool competition reflecting the Millennial’s Perspective of the 1898 Negros Revolution.
Vice Mayor Torres said the Millenial’s Perspective activities were held “to help instill in the minds of young people values of love for God, love for country and love for fellowmen so they may grow to be progressive and steadfast Filipinos.”
The contests and winners in the Millenial’s Perspective events:
Dramatic Reading – Ramon Torres Ma-ao Sugar Central NHS School; Spoken Words Poetry – Ramon Torres Sagasa National High School; Rap - Ramon Torres Malingin National High School; Vlog - Ramon Torres Louisiana National High School; Short Film – RTNHS – Main; and Intercollegiate One-Act Play – USLS Maskara Theatre Ensemble.
The City Environment Office held an awarding ceremony at the Balay ni Tan Juan Museum for the Kabahin Ka Inter- Barangay Clean and Green contest.
In this activity, the barangays were divided into four categories.
The winners were: Upland – 1. Binubuhan 2. Ilijan 3. Bacong; Lowland South – 1. Sagasa 2. Caridad 3. Bagroy; Lowland North – 1. Abuanan 2. Dulao 3. Malingin; Coastal/City Center – 1. Poblacion 2. Calumangan 3. Taloc.
A live band concert and grand fireworks capped the celebration at Bantayan Park.*
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