Aside from this, Pantal earned the right to represent the city anew in the Festivals of the North on April 26, of which it is also the defending champion and the contingent to beat.
Besting 18 other contingents, Pantal wowed not just the judges but also the crowd with their colorful costume and their superb execution of the movements of fish farmers in the harvesting of bangus even under the rain in the streets and in the city plaza, eventually winning the Gilon-Gilon ed Baley back to back for the second straight year.
Barangay Pantal was also adjudged as this year’s best in costume and in street dancing.
Coming in second is Gilon-Gilon’s hall of famer, Barangay Lucao, which also won as best in musicality award this year.
Barangay Tebeng improved its fourth place finish last year by emerging as this year’s second runner-up while Barangay Caranglaan was 3rd runner-up and Barangay Tapuac landed as this year’s 4th runner-up. Tapuac was not among the top five winners last year.
As champion, Pantal received a cash prize of P150,000; Lucao, P100,000; Tebeng, P80,000; Caranglaan, P60,000; and Tapuac, P50,000. Pantal and Lucao received additional P10,000 for bagging each of the minor awards.
Mayor Belen T. Fernandez, the honorary chairperson in the Bangus Festival 2015, expressed elation over the spirit of the dancers, who like her was soaked in the rain but went on to perform their best in the Gilon-Gilon.
Back-to-back champion Pantal will defend its crown in this year’s Festivals of the North on April 26 against 14 contingents from Pangasinan, Zambales, Bulacan, Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, and La Union. (Joseph C. Bacani/CIO)