Tangub City celebrates 20th Christmas Symbols Festival

It was an unexpected trip of sorts. Originally, planned to go to Tangub City December 21st to watch the 20th anniversary show of Sinanduloy cultural Troupe. But due to certains limitations, plans did not push through.

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Then December 13th, I got a message from Mr. Jojin Pacual, the choreographer of Sinanduloy if I can go to Tangub and judge the city’s Chritmas Symbols Festival on the 16th. Without any hesitation, I said yes.

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I was so excited! For the first time I will be able to see the famed Christmas Festival of Tangub City, which earned them the title as the Christmas Capital of mindanao.

So off I flew to the Labo Airport in Ozamis City. Tangub City is just 30 minutes away from Ozamis City, the Capital of Misamis Occidental.

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December 16 marks the second judging of the Christmas Symbols Festival. apparently, there will be three judging dates for the competition. December 1 was the first judging during its opening. December 16th when I went there, and this coming January, during the closing ceremonies.

The theme for the Christmas Symbols is Christmas from Around the World. This year, 16 larger-than-life popular world landmarks were erected around the city plaza complex by the various government offices.

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There’s the Eiffel Tower of Paris France, the Besakih Temple of Bali Indonesia, Marina Bay singapore, Chechen Itza of Mexico, Coloseum of Rome, the Cristo Rei Monument in Lisbon Portugal, hong Kong Disneyland, Pagsanjan Falls of Laguna, Brandenburg Gate of Berlin, Petronas Tower of Kuala Lumpur, and a lot more!

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Each of the installations were intricately designed using recycled materials and locally available products.

Many used materials like, corn husks, coconut husks, locally available shells, and lampirong shells, or more popularly known as the “capiz Shells”.

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I got so overwhelmed. It was a feast for the eyes! The entries for this year’s festival is really really beautiful. And judging them, is a tough job.

But since this is a contest, whether we like it or not, a winner has to be declared. After the endless deliberations, we finally arrived at a decision at almost 12 midnight.

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In the end, the entry representing the Temple of Heaven in Forbidden City in china emerged as the 2nd judging winner. I love ho they capitalize on the use of colors. It’s bright, and evokes a feeling of joy. The two dragons at the side of the temples should not be missed. I love how they use the lampirong shells to create the scales of the dargon. Ang ganda talaga!

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First runner up was the entry representing the Chechen Itza of Mexico. It’s so big! and Tall! Infact, you can climb up to the top of the pyramid, that is, if you are not afraid of heights. But I should tell you. The view from the top is so amazing! You get a bird’s eye view of what’s happening around. Very creative. The team, used coconut husk that looks like rocks from afar.

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Finishing third place was the entry representing a temple in Japan. I think it was done by a local hospital. The cherry blossoms around the temple were actually made using the used IV bottles, sprayed with pink.

Very very lovely!

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And as if my trip to the 16 Christmas installations weren’t enough, I went back to the plaza on the second night to shoot a little bit more. too bad it rained during my second night.

It was a very memorable trip! I promise, I will go back to Tangub City next year on the opening day, whether I will judge the event or not. I really enjoyed the Christmas Symbols Festival of Tangub!

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If you are in Ozamis, pagadian or in other nearby towns, you can still catch the glitz of this year’s festival until the first week of January!

Many many thanks to Sir Jojin Pascual of Sinanduloy Cultural Troupe, to the City Tourism Office, Miss Daisy of City Councilor’s Office, and to Mayor Philip Tan for the warmest welcome and the hospitality you showed to me! See you all again next year!

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Comments (1)


  1. Khmer says:

    yes.. i agree.. been there 3 weeks ago..before Pablo came..but fortunately, it wasnt ruin by the storm..it has survived unlike last year..i had a great time watching the lanterns and there crafts..amazing!

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