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Philippine Festivals: July

sandugo
Sandugo Festival. Photo courtesy of PhilJa.com

Parades, street dancing, theatrical plays, religious or cultural rituals, trade fairs, exhibits, concerts, pageants and various games and contests – all these and more give color and life to fiestas around the nation. These celebrations honor the moments in history that has defined identity, culture, and locality in the areas where they occur. They highlight traditions indigenous to the locale.

Philippine Festivals came with Christianity, during the Spanish rule. Many of the communities in the country had a patron saint assigned to each of them. Fiestas were days in honor of them. It became a key to spreading the Catholic religion throughout the nation.

combined
From top left (Clockwise): Lubid Festival, Kinis Festival, Sagayan Festival, Banana Festival, Banig Festival. Photo courtesy of GMA Network, Floyd Evangelista Flores, TheAmazingAmado, TripWow Trip Advisor, and Joanna Mae Figues, respectively.

Now, there are so many Philippine festivals. And they mean food – lots of them. Usually, houses are open to anybody who wants to eat. It feels as if everyone are friends with each other. Also, festivals could mean day-off to most employees as they are declared as public holidays.

PhilippineFood
Photo courtesy of Rain de Ocampo and Wikimedia

Here’s a list to help you experience festivities this July:

DAY FESTIVAL LOCATION DESCRIPTION
1-10 Banana Festival Tagum City Street dancing, agri trade fair to highlight Davao del Norte as “banana country”
1-31 Sandugo Festival Tagbilaran City, Bohol Bohol’s annual commemoration of the Blood compact (mardi gras parade) between Rajah Sikatuna and Miguel Lopez de Legazpi. Highlights of the festival are the Sandugo street dancing & Mardi Gras. These dances depict the theme of “friendship among equals and international diplomacy” expressed in the participating group’s traditional culture.
1-2 Feast of our Lady of Guibang Gamu, Isabela Annual feast day of the Miraculous Lady of Guibang
1-2 Feast of our Lady of Piat Piat, Cagayan Annual feast day of Our Lady of Piat highlighted by the procession of the Marian Image being venerated for centuries.
1-7 Gatas ng Kalabaw Festival Cabanatuan City A celebration in promoting Nueva Ecija as the source of Carabao’s mil, with 5 cities / municipalities as top producers of Gatas ng Kalabaw namely: Science City of Munoz, Llanera, Talavera, San Jose City and  Sto. Domingo.
1 San Carlos Charter Anniversary San Carlos, Negros Occidental Usually celebrated with a Thanksgiving Mass, sports activties, concerts, parade, beauty pageant and awarding to the city’s achiever of the year.
1 Araw ng Davao del Sur, Davao del Norte, Davao Oriental Digos City, Tagum City, Mati Celebration of the division of Davao into three provinces. Consist of agro trade fair, civic military parade, sports competition, horsefight, tribal dances, beauty pageants, etc.
1 Sinugdan Festival Maasin City, Southern Leyte A religious street pageant as homage to the Holy Child Jesus,  with its theme – “One Beat, One Faith, One Southern Leyte” features the different festivals of Maasin City and the 18 Municipalities of the province.
1 Tanggogoan Festival Digos City Celebration of Araw ng Davao del Sur every July 1. Highlights of the celebration are Search for Mutya ng Davao del Sur, street dancing and tribal dance competition.
2 Araw ng Pasig Pasig City A grand celebration of the Pasig day highlighted by different activities like the Mutya ng Pasig Pageant, Dancing Parade, Outstanding Pasiguenos Night, Arts & Literary Competition, Palarong Pinoy, Kusina Pasigueno, etc.
3 Banig Festival Badian, Cebu In celebration of Badian’s Annual Fiesta, the festival showcases the Cebuano & Badianganon culture, tradition, delicacies & local products especially its famous “mats” (banig).
3 Feast of the Holy Cross of Wawa (Pagoda sa Wawa) Bocaue, Bulacan The feast features the Pagoda, which is a gaily-decorated structure riding on a huge banca that glides along the Bocaue River.
4 Sagayan Festival (Maranao War Dance) Tubod, Lanao del Norte This festival depicts the rich Maranao culture pageantry war dance performed by warriors & fan dance by the Maranao maidens held during Araw ng Lanao del Norte.
4 Phil-Am Friendship Day Baguio City Revival of friendship among Filipinos, Americans & other Nationalities accented with the sale exposition of variety products.
5 Araw ng Hagonoy Hagonoy, Davao del Sur Executive Order No. 596 creating Hagonoy into a municipality last July 5, 1953. Highlights include parades, field demonstration, trade fairs & traditional festivities.
8 Alegria de Isabela Isabela City A festival based on a legend that tells how the early townsfolk survived a raging storm, where St. Isabela was seen blocking a giant wave. Celebrated with a regatta & procession of the image and merry- making beside the cathedral
12-16 Lubid Festival Malilipot, Albay A weeklong celebration showcasing abaca hemp – locally known as lubid which the municipality is known to be the region’s major producer. Various activities are highlighted by a street dance parade where participants are colorfully dressed in abaca costumes.
12 Hudyaka Festival Laguindingan, Misamis Oriental Street dancing competition which depicts the historical events of how Laguindingan become one of the municipalities of Misamis Oriental
13-18 Tinalak Festival Koronodal City, South Cotabato An annual celebration of the Province of South Cotabato that demonstrate the importance of T’nalak cloth as the cultural image of the Province.  The variety of activities of the festival mimics the T’nalak cloth, being a piece of cloth weaved to varied designs.  The festival activities are characterized by its focus on people and development anchored on tourism, history and culture and Arts.
14-15 Sinarapan Festival San Buenaventura, Buhi, Camarines Sur Showcase the world’s largest fish locally known as “sinarapan” which is found abundant in the area.  Various activities are lined up highlighted by the float competition.
15-16 Subayan Keg Subanen Festival Ozamiz City, Misamis Occidental A week-long trade fair/ street dancing depict songs, dances and other forms of simulated social expression of the rich Subanon cultural heritage
15-30 Cordillera Day Baguio City / CAR Provinces An annual celebration of the creation of Cordillera Administrative Region.
15 S’lang Festival Malungon, Sarangani Province A municipal celebration that gives importance to the B’laanl Culture and traditions being the original inhabitants of the place.
16 Pahinungod Festival Carrascal, Surigao del Sur Highlights include a Mardi Gras performed around the streets of Carrascal in honor of their patroness, Our Lady of Mt. Carmel.
17-23 Binuhat Festival Tagum City An advocacy celebration recognizing the rights and social contributions of the gay community in different fields of endeavors from technical aspects, business, academe, creative and performing arts that foster acceptance of their gender in the society.
18-25 Kinis Festival Panganiban, Catanduanes Panganiban is one of the municipalities that host natural sanctuaries for hard-shell crabs or locally known as  “kinis”. Dubbed as the “Crab Capital” of the island, the town celebrates its annual ‘Kinis Festival’ on the month of July. The highlights of the festival include the street dance competition, crab racing and trade fare (One Town One Product) that aims to promote the town’s crab industry.
19 Padigosan Festival Digos City The day is utilized to commemorate the founding of Digos as a municipality.
22-25 Libon Paroy Festival Libon, Albay Katalingkasan which means freedom and rebirth, is held in conjunction with the Libon Town Fiesta and the feast of its Patron Saint, St. James the Greater. The festival aims to revive the rich cultural heritage of the town and at the same time promote local tourism.
22 Kaliga Festival (Street Pageantry) Gingoog City, Misamis Oriental Street dancing, trade fair & cultural presentations in observance of the City Charter day.
22 Birth Anniversary of Apolinario Mabini Talaga, Tanauan An annual celebration commemorating the birth anniversary of our Sublime Paralytic.
23 Ibid Festival Caibiran, Biliran Ibid Festival portrays how the town of Caibiran got its name from the species of monitor lizard locally known as “ibid”.
23 Araw ng Nabunturan Nabunturan, Compostela Valley Province Founding anniversary of the municipality.
23 Subilan Festival Batangas City An annual celebration wherein a ritual dance is being done to pay homage to the Holy Cross as a sort of thanksgiving for a bountiful harvest.
24-25 Kinabayo Festival (Battle of Covadonga) Dapitan City, Zamboanga del Norte A re-enactment of the Spanish-Moor wars, particularly the battle of Covadonga.
24 Sinulog de Tanjay Tanjay, Negros Oriental A street dancing with mock battles between Moros and Christians followed by a reconciliation through the intercession of the patron Señor Santiago.
July 25-Aug 1 Buganihan Festival Compostela Valley Celebration of Buganihan
25-31 Balikcarcanmadcarlan Cantillan, Surigao del Sur Week-long activities participated by all Balikbayans.
25 Kadagatan Festival Cortes, Surigao del Sur A yearly thanksgiving of Cortesanons done through street dancing. Costumes and props of dancers symbolize marine life.
25 Panagsogod Festival Sogod, Cebu A celebration which traces back the roots of the Municipality of Sogod where the white and black sands in the area provided early settlers a productive livelihood.
25 Kutoo Festival Cateel, Davao Oriental Pre-harvest ritual of thanksgiving.
25 Saint James the Apostle Fiesta Compostella Valley Feast of St. James the Apostle celebration.
July 26-Aug 2 Tourism Consciousness Week Butuan City Several tourism-related activities are lined-up for the week such as Nightly Cultural show, Palagsing Festival, Laro ng Lahi, Photo Exhibit, Speech Contest, Quiz bowl, Sining contest in Butuanon Competition; Mountainbike, Motocross and BMX exhibitions.
26 Pakapya-Agtike Socorro, Mindoro Oriental The festival is being held annually to commemorate the town fiesta.  It is a ceremonial tradition practiced by Tadyawan Mangyans as a thanksgiving ritual to praise the Almighty for bountiful harvests.
26 Sta. Anang Banak Taguig River Festival Municipality of Taguig A fluvial parade in honor of the town patroness St. Anne. The thrills and excitement of the fishers are replayed after year by the “pasubo” where fluvial parade participants in Colorful boats and spectators by the riverbanks toss goodies of fruits and native delicacies to each other.
26 Kaumahan Festival Barili, Cebu A festival of revelry where merry making and showcasing of Barili’s agricultural products takes center stage which give rise to the tow’s agricultural and economic development.
30 Anniversary of the Battle of Paye Balimbing, Boac, Marinduque The first officially recorded encounter between the United States troops and the Filipino Revolutionary forces in the island of Marinduque wherein the latter in spite of poor weaponry emerged victorious.
31 Kahimoan Abayan Festival Butuan City A riverside festivity in honor of Saint Anne, Patroness of Agusan River highlighted with baroto races and indigenous games for men, women and children capped by a fluvial procession.
31 San Ignacio de Loyola Fiesta Monkayo, Compostela Valley Province Celebrating the feast of San Ignacio de Lotola.

Credits: Wikipedia.org

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