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Kadagatan Festival of Albay

Kadagatan Festival - Bacacay, Albay Every Black Saturday

The civic-oriented heart of the officers and members of the Rotary Club of Mayon, Bacacay chapter has paved the way to the institutionalization of bancathon.

Bancathon started through the successful collaborative efforts of the Rotary Club, the defunct Provincial Constabulary, Albay command under the initiative of Colonel Inigo Balardo (retired), Sergio P. Villar and Col. Banadera with the tireless support of the Department of Tourism (DOT) Region V.

The first Bancathon Race was held in 1982, coinciding with Black Saturday of the Holy Week, the traditional Catholic celebration of the passion of Jesus Christ at Roca Baluarte, one of the historical tourist sites in Bacacay of the Province of Albay.

On the 7th annual Bancathon in 1989, again spearheaded by the Rotary Club of Mayon, the celebration was transferred to the local government unit of Bacacay, retaining the traditional cash prize awards and trophies.

Innovations in the competition were conceived to add more color and excitement to the race. Other sea crafts were included in that race such as balsa an casco.

The inclusion of other types of sea crafts had expanded the annual sea race with participants from other coastal areas in Albay and neighboring regions in the country. These various races had likewise invited more spectators to witness the grand race, prompting the local organizers to alter the name of Bancathon.

In the year 2000, the local government unit of Bacacay took note of the increasing interest in the yearly maritime spectable by passing a legislative act that officially changed it from Bancathon to Kadagatan Festival, holding it as usual every Black Saturday.

Albay Festivals

Magayon Festival (Month of May, Albay) - It relives the origin of Mayon Volcano. The festival features sports and cultural events and trade fairs. The focus of the event is the stage reenactment of the tragic love story of the legend of Daragang Magayon and Panganoron whose fatal deaths gave birth to the volcano. Legend has it that Magayon’s grave became Mayon while the clouds kissing her is Panganoron.

Sarung Banggi festival (Sto. Domingo, Albay Month of May - The Sarung Banggi festival marks the commemoration of an ingenuous Bicol heritage as Sto. Domingo, Albay celebrates its Maiden year last May 2002. This Cultural Festivity is in recognition of the invaluable contribution of the late Potenciano Valladolid Gregorio, a native of this town, to this municipality, the Bicol Region and the whole country for his music and compositions particularly the immortal love song Sarung Banggi that paved the way for and introduced the Philippines to the landmark of musical world.The uniqueness of Sarung Banggi is its bicolness, a festival that is genuinely Bicol. Sarung Banggi song identifies us as Bicolanos just as the Lupang Hinirang is for the Filipinos. Coinciding with the birth of the late composer, this Bicol Festival, calendared on the month of May and every year thereafter, is a weeklong non-stop celebration that aims to display the rich cultural legacy and exceptional character of the DomingueƱos being lovers of arts and music. The main attraction of this Festival is a one of a kind street presentation, as it is held in the evening that best depicted the theme of the song Sarung Banggi. Exciting choreographies and impressive costume designs were seen with matchless intense lighting from indigenous materials.

In May 19 of 1880, Potenciano V. Gregorio was born in a modest little town of Libog now Sto. Domingo, not knowing that he would be instrumental in bringing honor, prestige and making his hometown more popular thru his composition, the most famous love song “Sarung Banggi”.

It is a very inspiring love story that was transformed into a beautiful song. It goes something like this…that one quiet dark night, the composer Potenciano V. Gregorio, solitary lying in his bed reminiscing how this young lady caught his mind and heart of whom he met that night. His longing for the young lovely lady remained until he fell asleep. Suddenly, he was awakened and heard the lonely chirping of a bird that sounds so sweet, inviting and enchanting tune to the ears of a person with a hear gilled with so much love. He was then encouraged to get up and looked outside the window. There in the dark, he saw clearly the charming face of the young lady. The loneliness, in his heart was changed to extreme peace, happiness and a deep knowledge of his love to the lady whom he adored greatly. That very night, Lolo Poten was motivated and inspired to write the lyrics of the song Sarung Banngi.

The song carries a meaningful message of love that touches the heart of so many people. It became the favorite of local serenaders and spread widely in the entire Bicol Region, then through out the Philippines and abroad. It gives an inspiration and pride in the heart of every DomingueƱos that the LGU brought the idea of honoring Potenciano V. Gregorio through Executive Proclamation No.1 s. 2002 signed by Honorable Mayor Herbie Aguas on the 8th day of January 2002 at Sto. Domingo, albay, hence, the Sarung Banggi Festival was born.

Magayon Festival of Albay

The Province of Albay celebrates the legend of Mayon Volcano as it holds the Magayon Festival in observance of its founding day this May.

Tourism Secretary Joseph Ace Durano said the festival complements the tourism promotion and development initiatives of the Department of Tourism (DoT), through its DoT-Region V Office and the Albay provincial government.

"Magayon is a salute to and a celebration of life – its richness and abundance. It unifies the best elements of Albay’s strong Catholic roots with certain aspects of its people’s traditional way of life – giving the entire fiesta a unique provincial flavor," he said.

Now on its seventh year, the month-long harvest festival embraces a comprehensive line-up of events, including cultural activities, trade fairs, travel and tourism exhibitions, sports competitions, and other special activities.

Because the Bicol region is popular for its cuisine, a key event is a regional cooking competition on May 13 to 15. Dubbed "Siram 2005," the contest focuses on the preparation of creative dishes using Bicolandia’s wealth of native products, like coconut, pili, and the ever-present sili. There will be separate categories for hospitality management students, homemakers, and professional chefs of the various hotels and restaurants of the region.

The month-long festivity also includes the Second Mayon Marathon, a youth eco-camp at the Mayon Volcano National park and a climb by the Bicol Federation of Mountaineers aimed at developing environmental consciousness among youths.

According to myth, Mayon Volcano, Bicol’s main tourist attraction because of its near-perfect cone, rose from the grave of Daragang Magayon who was abducted and eventually killed by a spurned suitor during a botched rescue.

Despite its destructive eruptions, the volcano is a sight to behold even during its active stage. It is best viewed from the picturesque Cagsawa Ruins Park in Daraga town which was buried in lava during an eruption in 1814.

Albay is also noted for fine sand beaches, Spanish-era churches, ancestral houses, historic sites, enchanting islands, lush dive and snorkeling sites, springs and waterfalls, and cave networks.

Department of Tourism

The Department of Tourism (Filipino: Kagawaran ng Turismo), abbreviated as DOT, is the executive department of the Philippine government responsible for the regulation of the Philippine tourism industry and the promotion of the Philippines as a prime tourist destination.

Started as a private initiative to promote the Philippines as a major travel destination, the Philippine Tourist & Travel Association was organized in 1950, and in 1956, the Board of Travel and Tourist Industry was created by Philippine Congress, until in 1973, President Ferdinand Marcos created the cabinet-level Ministry of Tourism (MOT), the agency Philippine Tourism Authority (PTA) and the Philippine Convention Bureau (PCB).

Then in 1986, under Executive Order Numbers 120 and 120-A signed by President Corazon Aquino, now the Department of Tourism was reorganized and the Philippine Convention Bureau was renamed as Philippine Convention and Visitors Corporation. In 1998, the Department of Tourism was one of the main offices of the government that is responsible for the culmination of the centennial celebrations of Philippine Independence from Spain. In 2002, the Department of Tourism initiated one of its most successful tourism promotion project the Visit Philippines 2003 in spite of post 9-11 threats of terrorism under Secretary Richard J. Gordon.

Tourism Projects

Visit Islands Philippines 1994
Miss Universe Beauty Pageant 1994
Florikultura '98 - international horticulture exhibition
Expo Pilipino 1998 - Philippine Centennial International Exposition
1998 Philippine Centennial Celebrations
World Exposition 2002 Manila (cancelled due to financial problems of the government)
Visit Philippines 2003
WOW (World Of Wonders) Philippines