Siquijor to celebrate 'festival of festivals'
By Rizalie A. Calibo
Siquijor (6 September) -- What could possibly bring together people in one place but important events like feasts and festivities.
In a few more weeks, Siquijor Island is expected to bring days of excitement as it celebrates its 36th Charter Anniversary on September 17, the first Siquijor Day celebration under the watch of Provincial Governor Orlando "Shane" Fua.
Preparations are underway for the celebration with the theme "SIQUIJOR atong probinsya... atong pinalangga... atong palamboon."
Govenor Fua, in a preliminary meeting express his willingness to make Araw ng Siquijor a 'festival of all festivals' in the island that marks the triumph of independence while giving honor to the people, Siquijodnons and non-Siqujodnons, who were made instruments in the making of Siquijor as a province.
The festival consists of a series of events including agro-trade fair, Search for Miss Siquijor Tourism, cultural presentation, sports fest, art and music, and awarding ceremonies.
The celebration kicked off with the opening of sportfest on August 31 at Maria, Siquijor. Highlighting the opening program was a parade that drew participation of local leaders, athletes and government employees all over the province. Presentation of the candidates for the Siquijor Miss Tourism 2007 also added color to the entire activity.
The agro-trade fair, dubbed Halad Siquijodnon which aims to boost the marketability of local products including tourism formally opens on September 14. This will showcase the Siquijor's best from agricultural products, processed foods, furniture and crafts, resort and restaurant, arts, music and dances. Also part of the whole package is the wellness showcase, livestock game and the skills competition on bartending, wine making, table skirting, etc.
There will be a contest for best dressed booth for resort and restaurant and crafts and food categories and a competition on the 'pinaka' of the local products.
The six municipalities will also have a showdown of festivals representing each municipality.
Invited as Keynote Speaker is Mr. Jenifer P. Cruz, exporter and manager/owner of the 33 point 3 Export Inc.
The Araw ng Siquijor celebration is anticipated to bring in more visitors in the island that likely results to increase in investments. As noted, a 28 percent growth in investments in the manufacturing and service sector was recorded at the Board of Investments (BOI) and the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) from January to July this year. The investments from the two sectors reached P101.12 billion.
Foreign investments increased by 47.18 percent to P75.94 billion and most businesses came from the United States with commitments of P27.3 billion, followed by Japan, P18 billion, and Norway, P11.17 billion. (PIA) [top]