They didn’t call Bacolod the “City of Smiles” for nothing!
The Masskara Festival started in the early 80s. That was a time for crisis in the city with a sunken ship and the sugarcane crisis. It was bad times for the people of Bacolod. The artists and the government worked to hold a Festival in that year. This was intended to turn the gloomy atmosphere of the city and turn it into an activity that would give the people hope. Indeed it was the city of smiles. After may years of celebrating this, it is proof that the people of Bacolod can rise up to any challenge and move on to a positive light.
And alas -
I’m back in my hometown!
I have never really experienced being in the streets during Masskara Festival even if I grew up in Bacolod. I was young then and my parents won’t allow me to go out.
I was happy to fly back home and last Sunday to witness this fun event!
We also wanted to show our support to our friend Eric of Byahilo.com and to his team! I tell you, Mica and I went with them all the way! From dancing in the streets to wait in the humid crowd, sit on the street, helping the team control the crowd, holding the rope, and up to their final performance in the plaza. It was a tiring experience but I couldn’t complain. I wasn’t wearing one of those heavy masks and tight costumes. I salute the dancers and all the participants for their dedication in the dance. I am a dancer myself and I know how it is to sacrifice a little but just so that I can perform well.
Assembly area: Lizares st.
It was 3pm, Sunday, Oct 16 2011 and the dancers wer getting ready!
Note: This is how a jeep looks like in Bacolod.
Finally, it was time to head off to Araneta st., one of the major roads in Bacolod that lead’s to the City’s Plaza.
The teams were already dancing in the streets. None of them wowed me – except for Barangay 17′s street dance!
They won Best in Choreography! And that is a big thing!
Their moves were so polished and lines were straight. It’s hard to pull of a synchronized dance just like that!
On the leftmost part is Eric
I had to take my photo with him first before he gets drowned by the crowd who wanted to take photos with him!!!
Mica and I were carrying floating Angry Birds balloons just in case we get lost in the crowd, we just put our balloon up high and we’ll find each other pretty smart huh! I may be short, but I can haz brainz!
and yes, that balloon was tied to our bags
Evening came and most of us, especially the dancers were exhausted. It was crowded, hot and humid. The team distributed snacks and water for everyone to nourish the body before the big dance-off!
This was our main Cathedral in front of our Plaza. I smiled seeing this. It has been a while.
And alas! It is time for the main dance at the Plaza! Since we weren’t able to get a media pass, we had to think of an alternative. Not being able to go inside, means missing the dance
Fortunately, we thought up of something. We joined the team, assisted the rope guy to control the crowd and we helped carry the props.
Once we were inside, we took our cameras and voiala!!!
The dancers had 4 costume changes, lots of props all synchronized with their dance!
The Masskara festival is all about loud and fun colors!
You have to paint the city the color Happy!
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Don’t miss the next Masskara Festival! It sure is one of the happiest festivals in town. The people of Bacolod are also warm and friendly ready to greet you with a smile!
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