Friday, November 18, 2011

All systems go for Sarangani’s Nov. 24-27 MunaTo Festival

ALABEL, Sarangani (November 17, 2011)- Organizers of the upcoming 9th MunaTo Festival said preparations are all set for the extravaganza of cultural events, exhibits, and crowd-drawing competitions guaranteed to stir excitement over this year’s celebration.

MunaTo Festival is a celebration honoring the first people and leaders of Sarangani.

MunaTo was derived from the native vernacular meaning “unang tao” or “first people”, the early inhabitants of Sarangani who passed on a rich cultural heritage.

MunaTo also refers to the makers of the 2000-year old anthropomorphic burial jars discovered in Maitum that are now in the National Museum.

As a tribute to the pioneering leaders of the province, MunaTo is a celebration of their efforts to spur development in Sarangani which is sustained up to this day.

Sarangani is rich with the local culture and tradition of the Blaan, Tboli, Manobo, Ubo, Kalagan, and Muslim tribes who succeeded in preserving the cultural heritage and the craftsmanship that are reflective of their respective culture.

This year’s festival is set on November 24-27 with activities lined up to showcase Sarangani’s “history, culture and resources.”

Acting coordinator of Sarangani Tourism and Investment Promotion Center (STIPC) Larry Asparin anticipated that “sounds and colors” with a festive mood would dominate the forthcoming MunaTo.

He expected a huge attendance this year compared to the previous celebrations because activities were properly screened to attract more people.

A considerable increase of tourists has been noted from the 16,080 in 2009 to 26,100 in 2010 as reported by the STIPC.

MunaTo Fun Run: “A Run Against Global Warming” from the Capitol grounds to barangay Maribulan in Alabel would open up the festival. Male and female runners of all ages are invited to join with prizes at stake for both male and female categories of P1,000 - 1st prize, P750 for 2nd prize, and P500 for the 3rd prize.

A hero’s welcome for the internationally acclaimed boxing icon and Sarangani Representative Manny Pacquiao from his recent victory in Las Vegas would also be staged on November 24.

The street dance on November 26 is an open competition which the organizer proposed bigger prizes this time of P100,000; P75,000 and P50,000 respectively for the champion, 1st and 2nd placers. A P12,000 consolation prizes would also be given.

The cheerdance competition, dubbed as “Sayaw Hugyaw sa Kalinaw”, is giving away prizes of P45,000; P30,000 and P20,000 for the champion, 1st and 2nd and a consolation of P10,000 each for the non-winning entries.

Other events worth watching are the cultural exhibits, Fabli Gu Ni (municipal showcase), Photo Exhibit, Moro Pagingadan and Kadtigi sa Kapangiluto (Moro Cottages and Traditional Delicacies), Wall Climbing, Zip Line, Karnabal sa Kapitolyo, Pearl of Sarangani Pageant, Motocross, Eco-Trek, Battle of the Bands, concert featuring Cueshe, street party and fireworks display. (Beverly C. Paoyon/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

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