Wednesday, December 29, 2010

2010 Giant Lantern Festival: Ginormous!

It has always been a childhood dream for me to see these ginormous lanterns and even if it's my second time to attend Pampanga's most celebrated festival, the excitement never gets old. The event was held at Robinsons Starmills Pampanga with nine barangays participating namely Barangay Dolores, Del Pilar, San Jose, San Juan, San Nicolas, Santa Lucia, Santo Nino, San Pedro and Telabastagan. Last year Barangay Dolores was able to bag the top spot and I must say they really deserve the prize.

This event has made San Fernando the Christmas Capital of the Philippines. 2010 marks the 102nd year of this world-famous festival and it's good to see that the event is much more organized compared to what I have witnessed a year ago. Now there is a VIP area where you can witness these lanterns in its full glory. We paid Php300 for the entrance. The fee includes a souvenir shirt, a bottle of water and a baller which serves as your ticket. Monoblock chairs are also provided so there's no need to worry on getting a comfortable space while watching the dazzling lights.

2nd round of the competition
There were some improvements to the lanterns. Its size was increased from 18 feet to 20 feet in diameter and new materials such as fiberglass and handmade paper were also used. The lanterns are now more synchronized with the music although I've noticed that most of them used the same ones last year especially those tracks from Mariah Carey's Christmas album. We weren't able to wait for the announcement of the winners but I've read that it was Barangay Sta. Lucia that won the top prize.

Barangay Dolores
My vote still goes for Barangay Dolores which veers away from the traditional Christmas songs that were used by most of its competitors. Nevertheless, the event was still a feast for the eyes. Congratulations to all the winners and I hope it will be a more dazzling event next year!


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