Nalawag a Paskua Mi Ditoy!
City Mayor Chevylle V. Fariñas spearheaded the much awaited lighting ceremony of the giant Christmas tree, and the different eye-catching, luminous decorations at the Aurora Park. She was accompanied by the father of the City, Vice Mayor Michael V. Fariñas, together with ABC President Honorable Mikee V. Fariñas, City Council member Honorable Shirley Ong Sin, Department Heads, Division Chiefs, NGO’s, Laoag City employees headed by the City Administrator Jami Fariñas, some of the Barangay Chairman’s of the City and the representatives of Accenture company who joined to the said event as partner of the Laoag City Government. The event was held last December 8, 2017 at 6:00 in the evening in front of the Laoag City Hall.
The lighting of the giant Christmas tree started with a mass officiated by Fr. Emeric Ambrose Monroy of the Diocese of Laoag, after which City Mayor Chevylle Fariñas gave her message. She said that this year 2017 was very challenging and at the same time an optimistic year for all the people of Laoag. “Realistically there will always be problems along the way”, but she’s grateful because “after all the struggles, the Laoagueños still remain steadfast and unselfish”. Laoag City has been blessed with different recognitions that may have only been possible with the help, trust, love and support of the people of Laoag.
Mayor Chevylle Fariñas also highlighted the Christmas Stars “parol” decorated in front of the City Hall, which were actually made by the residents of the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology. This shows that here in Laoag, everyone is inspired to be productive, even though they cannot spend Christmas and attend the ceremonial lighting, for she knows “that in every hand that labored hard or every star that was decorated is a hope burning, a ray of optimism that these coming days will be so much full of love, forgiveness, and peace. That is what Laoag City is all about”.
As the countdown started and the giant Christmas tree was lighted, the performance of the renowned Samiweng Singers and Aliwan drummers of the Ilocos Norte National High School, together with the champion of the recently held choral competition, made the whole evening an experience to cherish this Christmas.
The theme for this year’s Christmas celebration is “Nalawag a Paskuwa Mi Ditoy”. Literally, it means “we have a bright Christmas here”. But while the giant Christmas tree may be shining bright, no other decoration may be able to describe, or any other centerpiece that may be able to showcase the people of Laoag who will always be that brightest star that will radiate and that will keep Laoag City moving faster and further forward.
Meanwhile, two of the main events of the 12 Days of Christmas were the Battle of the Bands and the much awaited Christmas Lantern Parade and Walking Christmas Décor Contest which showcased the different artfully made lanterns by the different Barangays of the City and some participating schools. The Day Care Centers’ Walking Christmas decors contest, in cooperation with the City Social Welfare and Development Office and the Association of Day Care Parents, was a very much anticipated event as the children themselves were decorated according to each Day Care Center’s theme. The winners were the following:
The barangay category
- 3rd placed – Barangay Pila
- 2nd placed – Barangay 7-A
- 1st placed – Barangay 26
- 3rd placed – INNHS
- 2nd placed – INCAT
- 1st placed – CTE
Day Care Centers
- 3rd placed – Raraepan Barit Day Care Center
- 2nd placed – Barangay 12 Day Care Center
- 1st placed – San Mateo Day Care Center
Battle of the Bands winners
- 3rd placed – INRSF
- 2nd placed – SCA
- 1st placed – NWU
Other activities worth watching for as part of the 12 Days of Christmas are still forthcoming. Mayor Chevylle V. Fariñas is thankful enough to all the Laoagueños for the full support to all the activities of the City Government. As she has said “the true Spirit of Christmas is not all about expenses, expensive gifts, or commercialism but it is all about love and respect of the people towards you”.