By: Rodrigo S. Victoria
Photos by Kenskie
Naval, Biliran (26 September) – Navaleños as well as visitors who witnessed today’s 149th celebration of Naval since its inception into a “pueblo” or town can only say one thing – what a grand celebration!
The day-long affair started with a solemn religious activity – a mass at the Naval Cathedral. Outside the cathedral, everybody’s excitement went high as the inclement weather disturbance threatened the festive mood of the day.
However, the high spirits of the Navaleños conquered all the fears brought by the bad weather with the energizing tone of the marching bands as they made their majestic strides in colorful and mesmerizing parade around the town.
The gleeful crowd beamed their best smiles notwithstanding the heavy traffic on the pedestrian with eyes concentrating the best looks among the participants of the parade. They patiently waited their favorite sons and daughters, friends, relatives and buddies to pass in order to give their heartfelt greetings by waving their hands.
If one’s attention was captivated during the parade, perhaps everybody’s energy was imprisoned by the remarkable opening ceremony and the different worthy services that took place right at the municipal grounds.
One of which was the releasing of doves and balloons by town officials led by Mayor Susan V. Parilla and guests of the celebration sending a message of hope, prosperity and peace to the town in the years ahead.
Photo by Jalmz
Photo by PIA Biliran
Photo by PIA Biliran
“Name it and you will have it for free” was the byword of the day. One can have a haircut in order to look differently today, others have executed their deed of sale to avoid paying legal fees, some visited the booths just to eat food products without handing a single penny, many have listed their names in order to avail of the medical and dental check up and many other social services offered by national government agencies which included NSO, DOH, TESDA, DTI, CSC, DOLE, NBI, PRC and other agencies, non-government organizations such as the IBP-Biliran Chapter, Biliran Medical and Dental Society, Naval Blind Masseurs, government-owned and controlled corporations like the GSIS, PAG-IBIG and SSS and other private entities such as the ABS-CBN-Cebu, Unilever, Nestle, Knorr, Fracasso and other food, refreshment and beauty establishments in Naval.
Form part of the day’s activity was the ABS-CBN-Cebu’s Feeding sa Bantay Bata 163 where children from all walks of life relished the nutritious food offered.
However, ABS-CBN’s participation led by Rico Lucena, the station’s news anchor and a native of Naval, did not stop in just giving nourishment to the body but also nourishment for the society to make a difference in the upcoming 2010 polls by initiating the “Iboto Mo, Ipatrol Mo” registration activity held at the jampacked NIT Gymnasium. Thousands of Biliranons went to the venue and registered as election patrollers including the young solon from the Lone District of Biliran, Representative Glenn A. Chong.
Time went unnoticed by many who availed of the different social services at the municipal grounds and in NIT Gymnasium. Everybody was overwhelmed by the splendor of things offered that satisfied their attendance to the celebration.
Everybody knows the celebration won’t end with an awe –inspiring activities held during the day but pretty sure this will be matched in the evening today by the dazzling and beauteous revelers who will sway and wiggle to the tune of cha-cha, curacha, tango, boogie, ball room and modern music and other animated sounds one wish to dance in the wide dance floor of the Naval Gymnasium tonight.
In the end, the celebration demonstrates hospitality and friendliness which are trademarks of a true Navaleño.
Mayor Susan V. Parilla in her message during the program said, these characters are what made Naval what it is today which attributed to the success of the 149th Pueblo Day celebration. (PIA-Biliran)