Surigao town's "Inuwak" flies high in Bonok-Bonok 2007 festival
by Harvey Entendez Diaz
Surigao del Norte (September 13) -- For the second time around, the contingent from the Municipality of Bacuag, Surigao del Norte, was declared the grand champion in the Bonok-Bonok Maradjaw Karadjaw Festival 2007 held on September 10 at the City Hall grounds in Surigao City.
This after Bacuag out-smarted the other six contingents coming from Butuan City, Surigao del Norte National High School (SNNHS), Province of Misamis Oriental, Surigao City Pilot School (SCPS), Cabadbaran City and Municipality of Jabonga, by showcasing the Inuwak Festival, Bacuag's famous local festival.
The Bacuag contingent was led by mayor, Sheila Mae Orquina-Cebedo, who also participated as one of the tribal dancers. Orquina-Cebedo also joined in the Bonok-Bonok Maradjaw Karadjaw Festival 2006, where Bacuag likewise emerged as the grand champion. The contingent received P200,000 in cash and a trophy from the Bonok-Bonok Culture and Arts Association Inc., the organizer of the annual Bonok-Bonok festival. Besides the major prize, Bacuag also received the Best in Coreography and Best in Costumes and Props awards, giving the contingent additional P10,000 in cash prize and a trophy in each special award.
Robert Lyndon S. Barbers, the chairman of the Bonok-Bonok Culture and Arts Association Inc., also announced during the awarding of the winners that the prizes for next year's Bonok-Bonok festival will still be the same, but if Bacuag still arise as the grand champion, a "Hall of Fame" award will be given to the contingent including a P100,000 cash. Once Bacuag attains this, the contingent will be barred from joining future Bonok-Bonok competitions.
Other winners in the competition are the SNNHS as the first placer, receiving P150,000 in cash and a trophy; Municipality of Jabonga (Sumayajaw Festival) as the second placer, receiving P100,000 in cash and a trophy; and SCPS as the third placer, receiving P75,000 in cash and a trophy. Jabonga was also awarded the Best in Musicality for exhibiting the best beat against other performances, giving the contingent an additional P10,000 and a trophy.
The Bonok-Bonok Maradjaw Karadjaw Festival is an annual event held in Surigao City in honor of the city's patron saint, Sr. San Nicolas de Tolentino. It is usually described as a convergence of regional festivals, as contingents are coming from different parts of the country representing their own local festivals. Previous competitions include street-dancing and a grand showdown held at the Surigao del Norte Provincial Grand Stand. But due to the Grand Stand's reconstruction, the Bonok-Bonok Culture and Arts Association Inc. proclaimed different changes in the festival, making this year's competition as a street-dancing with stationary dances performed at strategic locations around the city.
The Bonok-Bonok Maradjaw Karadjaw Festival 2007 was presented by the City Government of Surigao, led by Hon. Alfonso S. Casurra, mayor of Surigao City; the Provincial Government of Surigao del Norte, led by Hon. Robert Ace S. Barbers, governor of Surigao del Norte; the Surigao City Tourism Council; and the Surigao del Norte Provincial Tourism Office. It was sponsored by Coca-Cola, San Miguel Corp., Asian Spirit Airlines and Smart Communications. (PIA Surigao del Norte) [top]