BAGUIO CITY – Panagbenga 2016 opens Monday, Feb. 1 with elementary schools’ drum and lyre parade down the main thoroughfares from the Panagbenga Park, and performance at Melvin Jones football grounds.
Spectators along the parade route expect to see children in flower motif or Cordillera-inspired costumes and props related to nature and the environment. The performers’ garb may also be biodegradable or recyclable materials; including decoration for their movable musical ensemble. Those assisting the group must be in appropriate and coordinated attires.
Dance steps may be creative ethnic-inspired in relation with this year’s theme: “Bless The Children With Flowers.” The Panagbenga hymn must be incorporated with the group’s choice of music or medley.
No dangerous stunts, or the use of confetti is allowed, it was known.
There are five judges at the street parade, and five at the field presentation, it was announced by Councilor Betty Lourdes Tabanda during the Kapihan last Wednesday. Tabanda, tasked as a member to select the judges assured those present of the judges’ impeccability.
“Those chosen are definitely top rate and experts in their field, experienced in national and international floral competitions,” Tabanda said. Stringent screening is a must, as the judges must not be related to any participant, she added.
In a media forum last week, it was known from the Baguio Flower Festival Foundation Incorporated (BFFFI) and Hotel and Restaurant Association of Baguio (HRAB) officers; hotelier Anthony de Leon and Freddie Alquiroz that preparations in coordination with concerned agencies are on-going.
Traffic plans were presented by the Baguio City Police Office Traffic Management Bureau (BCPO-TMB) headed by P/Supt. Leon Talleo; with newly appointed BCPO Officer-in-Charge George Daskeo.
According to Daskeo, an augmentation force from the Police Regional Office is expected for security during the activities. Volunteers are also deployed along the parade routes and event venues.
Other Panagbenga activities scheduled are: February 1 to March 6, Baguio Blooms exhibition and exposition at Lake Drive, Burnham Park; Feb. 4-5, International Tourism and Hospitality Students’ Convention and 5th National League of Tourism Student Skills Olympics; Feb. 9, Chinese Spring Festival; Feb. 14, Color Fun Run; Handog ng Panagbenga Sa Pamilya Baguio at the Melvin Jones Grandstand and Football grounds: Let A Thousand Flowers Bloom, Kite-Flying Challenge, Panagbenga Fancy Dress/Costume Competition, Fireworks Display;
Feb. 19 to 21, PMA Grand Alumni Homecoming; Feb. 19, Golf Tournament For A Cause; Feb. 22, Boyce Avenue Concert; Feb. 27, Mr. Panagbenga Muscle Showdown at Baguio Convention Center; ABS CBN Kapamilya Karavan; Pacific Extreme Combat at the Baguio Convention Center; Feb. 27 to 28, Sponsor’s and exhibitor’s Day at the Athletic Bowl; Feb. 29 to March 6, Session Road In Bloom; March 5, Pony Boys’ Day at Wright Park; Panagbenga Princess Pageant; Handog Pasasalamat at Melvin Jones Football grounds; March 5 and 6, 14th Open Scrabble Tournament; March 6, Tambalang Saya; Closing Ceremonies and Grand Fireworks display at the Athletic Bowl and other areas in the Central Business District./Julie G. Fianza