Bontoc to institutionalize "Lang-ay" Festival
BONTOC, Mt. Province (23 December) -- Inspired by the unprecedented success of the first "Lang-ay" Festival last April, the provincial government decided to institutionalize this as an annual cultural festival to be part of the celebration of Mountain Province Day.
"Lang-ay" is a cultural practice of the people of Mt. Province of celebrating important occasions partaking of food and wine, sharing joy with others, fostering solidarity among families and promoting closer ties among community members and visitors. The provincial officials believe that the values of this culture should be supported and sustained.
Provincial Ordinance No. 67 known as the "Lang-Ay Festival Ordinance" defines Lang-ay Festival as "a wine and cultural festival to celebrate Mt. Province Foundation Day." It will be a week-long activity culminating on April 7, the Mt. Province Day.
Among the activities are agro-industrial fair that include trade exhibit and selling area of local products like fruit wine setting, processed foods, loom weaving, gifts and souvenirs and furniture sets; tourism and culture exhibit by municipality and agricultural exhibit of farmers.
Cultural presentations will also take center stage with each town presenting its culture, traditions and practices. A cultural street dancing will also be conducted during the foundation day. Indigenous sports will be featured in the cultural sports competition alongside the contemporary sports.
To promote the tourism potentials of the province, a package of interactive tour for specific groups called the Great Tour will be conducted. It will be a "discover and appreciate" kind of tour of the scenic spots in the province.
"Gawis ay Mountain Province" Awards of Excellence is a tribute to individuals for exemplary performance in their respective endeavors Major awards are Outstanding barangay and municipality. Specific awards include cleanest and greenest barangay and municipality, outstanding municipal police station, business excellence awards, Huwarang Ina, Lola, Pamilya, Empleyado and Opisina. Other categories may be added.
The Lang-ay Festival will have an annual appropriation of one million pesos from the Annual General Fund Budget of the Provincial Government.
Fund generation activities like sponsoring concerts and selling of raffle tickets whose proceeds will accrue to the general fund of the province may be done subject to accounting and auditing rules and regulations.
During the first Lang-ay Festival, the Association of Provincial Executives (APEX ) headed by Provincial Administrator Paulo Pagteilan generated funds from raffle tickets and souvenir program. Some of the proceeds were used to procure facilities for the Bontoc General Hospital like television sets and ceiling fans and to repair or replace destroyed door knobs, faucets and light bulbs and broken glass doors and windows. The rest will also be used for the improvement of the children's park and installation of tubed- in music for the Rizal Park in this capital town.
The Lang-ay Festival actually served as the launching pad of the province's emerging wine production industry which is now slowly penetrating markets in Manila and Baguio. (PIA-MP) [top]