Singkaban 2013 highlights Bulacan heritage
MALOLOS, Bulacan – Jubilant celebrations steeped in culture and history will be observed by Bulankenyos as they mark their annual Singkaban Fiesta this week. Already, streets here are bursting with colors and music that highlight Bulacan’s historical and artistic contribution to the country.
A singkaban is a decorated arch made from wood, specifically from bamboo, which serves as a signage of entrance of a municipality or a province. For Bulakenyos, the word is short for “Sining at Kalinangan ng Bulacan.”
The Singkaban Fiesta 2013, considered as the grandest celebration of the province, will last until September 16 under the theme “Makulay na Sining at Kalinangan: Bulacan, Ipagmalaki at Ikarangal.” One of its highlights will be the parade of extravagantly adorned floats featuring the province’s achievements in sports, arts, governance, beauty pageants, as well as the specialty products and cultural contributions from the different towns.
The float of Paombong, for instance, was filled with nipa leaves. Paombong is known worldwide and dubbed as the Vinegar Capital of the Philippines for its purest and organic vinegar, which is extracted from the sap of nipa or locally called “sasa.”
A piece of the province’s historical heritage was retold through a brief musical performance by the Barasoain Kalingangan Foundation Inc., followed by an excerpt of Jose Rizal’s Noli Me Tangere Musical.
This year’s Singkaban also made room for trade fairs and exhibits designed to promote the province’s products and delicacies. The Bulakenyo Trade Fair, for example, displays products like sweets and delicacies, gifts, toys, clothes, bags and fashion accessories locally made from the province.
There are also the Bulacan Pasalubong Center and Bulacan Packaging Service and Toll Packing Center that give visitors an idea of the services available from the province.
Also being held during the Singkaban week is the Bulacan Food Festival Exposition (BUFFEX) which brings together the province’s different sectors and groups involved in food production. At BUFFEX, one can sell or sample different foods and even join on-the-spot cooking tutorials or watch the “Chefs on Parade” and other competitions.
Singkaban is also an occasion to promote the province’s history and inventions. The Manlilikhang Bulakenyo exhibit features Bulakenyo inventors and demonstrations of their inventions.
Dakilang Bulakenyo and Lakan Sining Exhibit, on the other hand, present the life and contributions of hero and propagandist Mariano Ponce who hailed from Baliwag, Bulacan. This year’s exhibits are also in commemoration of Ponce’s 150th birth anniversary.
“Singkaban is more of a celebration of being a Bulakenyo. It is the time to remind us of how important our province is, its history, culture, and [contribution] to the country,” said Darwin Santiago, who graced the event from Hagonoy, Bulacan.