Urdaneta celebrates Dumayo Festival
Text and photos by Virgilio Sar. Maganes
URDANETA CITY- This city celebrated its 1st Dumayo Festival, coinciding with the 13th city charter celebration last March 21. It was attended by the city officials, city employees, government and non-government officials and employees, businessmen, academic communities and barangay officials.
The four-day event (March 21-March 24) was also marked with the 3rd Regional Arts Competition among schools division in Region I which was hosted by the Urdaneta City Schools Division of the Department of Education (DepEd).
In the morning of March 21, a grand parade was undertaken which was led by Mayor Amadeo G.E. “Bobom” Perez IV and Vice Mayor Onofre “Bong” Gorospe together with the members of the Sangguniang Panlungsod who rode in a replica of the “galleon”, a ship where Fray Urdaneta rode in coming to the Philippines centuries ago.
This was followed by the competition on street dancing at the city’s Cultural and Convention Center. The entry of Ilocos Sur with its “Tobacco Festival” garnered the first prize, La Union for the 2nd prize and Urdaneta City represented by the Divine Word College for the 3rd prize.
Highlighting the opening of the Dumayo Festival on that day was the search of the “Most Attractive Carabao” which was participated in by the 34 barangays of the city which were clustered into ten districts.
The carabaos were dressed in fashion together with their carts full of products from their districts.
“This is the first time we will do this and it has already earned enthusiasm from the people. They wished that it will be by barangays in next year’s celebration,” said Rosary “Chinky” Perez, executive assistant to the Mayor and chair of the Dumayo Festival.
Cash prizes and trophies awaited the winners. First prize received P11,000 and a trophy, second prize has PP8,000 and a trophy, third prize got P6,000 and a trophy and other entries have P3,000 each as consolation prizes. The “most behaved carabao” got also a trophy.
The entries were judged on OTOP (district products)-25%, Uniqueness- 25%, Health status-30% and Decoration-20%.
The judges gave the nod to the entry of District 8 (Catablan, San Jose and Labit West) as first place, District 10 (Cayambanan, Nancalobasaan, Tolong, Anonas) as 2nd place and District 6 (Palina East, Palina West, Sto. Domingo, Sta. Lucia) as 3rd place. The entry of District 9 (Nancamaliran East, Nancamaliran West, Pinmaludpod) was adjudged as the “most behaved carabao”.
Cash prizes and trophies were awarded to the winning entries by Vice Mayor Onofre “Bong” Gorospe.
In the afternoon, Ani ng Sining, featuring the school of performing arts of the Urdaneta City National High School performed to the delight of the audience. Raffle draws was conducted in between performances.
From March 22-23, the activities were concentrated on the Regional Arts Competition featuring rondalla, folk dancing, clay molding and choir singing.
The celebration was capped by the opening of the city’s Pasalubong Center last March 24, 2011. The Center is located at the ground floor of Public Market Wing B which will showcase the products of the city such as recycld magazine bags (San Jose), baracbac (water lily) bags (Anonas), wooden frames (Sta. Lucia), chocolate cookies (Livelihood Training Center (LTC)), malnggay canton noodles (LTC), peanut tarts (LTC), recycled doormats/placemat and plastic flowers (Cabuloan) and T-shirts bearing the city’s logo and the “Cleanest, Greenest and Safest City”- the first prize award garnered by the city for 2010 from the Regional Development Council (RDC).
The opening was graced by Vice Governor Ferdinand Jose Z. Calimlim, Jr. who in his message after the ribbon cutting said that the event was momentous because of the ingenuity of the city’s administration to help small businessmen in the city.
“The provincial government and Urdaneta City are partners in the promotion of products of the province,” Calimlim said adding that the critics of the city government were wrong to have said that Urdaneta City will not rise up due to debts.
“Due to the city’s leaders from former Mayor Amadeo R. Perez, Jr. and now Mayor Bobom, the city has risen so swiftly and even having the highest income in Region I. You are a showcase in the whole province,” he further said.
Tourism Officers Rosary “Chinky” Perez and Pamela J. Tablada said that the opening of the Pasalubong Center will just be the start of promoting the city as a tourist destination.
“We will network with other towns to promote their tourist areas and Urdaneta will be their place to stay because of our hotels, resorts and restaurants. We have to organize the owners of these tourist facilities. We are eyeing also for the development of the park of the New City Hall as a site for social functions such as garden weddings,” Chinky Perez said.
Meanwhile, Mayor Bobom Perez said that the engineered sanitary land fill in Catablan village will be formally opened on April 8, 2011 with no less than President Benigno S. Aquino III as the guest of honor and speaker.