Ligligan Parul 2020 (Giant Lantern Festival)
Giant and brightly colored lanterns brighten up the dark skies as the world-renowned “Ligligan Parul” (Giant Lantern Festival) takes center stage on Wednesday night at the Robinsons Starmills in the City of San Fernando, Pampanga.
In its 112th year, the annual festival was staged not as a competition but as a virtual exhibition by lantern makers from the seven participating villages and was aired live on social media and local television channels. (via Zorayda Tecson)
7 participating villages:
- Sto. Niño,
- San Nicolas,
- Sta. Lucia,
- San Juan, and
San Fernando, a city located in the province of Pampanga, is known as the Philippine Christmas capital. The city is famous for its colorful and handcrafted lanterns that had been part of the province’s Christmas traditions since the 1900s. The Christmas lantern is called parul sampernandu in Kapampangan, the local language of the Pampanga province or parol in Filipino.
The lanterns symbolize the Star of Bethlehem, thus most lantern designs from San Fernando incorporate a star caricature. In the Catholic tradition, the Three Kings are believed to have followed the Star of Bethlehem that led them to find the Child Jesus in a manger.
Every December, the Giant Lantern Festival (Ligligan Parul in Kapampangan) is held in San Fernando. The lanterns are transformed like gigantic glowing stars with rotors that synchronize thousands of dancing lights and the sound of Christmas melodies. Usually the giant lanterns are about six meters tall and hung up in the air. Decorated with thousands of light bulbs, capiz shells, and fiberglass, the giant lanterns are stuck to polyvinyl plastic. It is a festival for the eyes; people flock at night to witness the grand salvo of lights and sound.
The Giant Lantern Festival is also a competition where various barangays in Pampanga compete to win for the most beautiful giant lantern in the province. The locals take pride in their province’s competition as it is where they showcase their creativity and knowledge in crafting the intricate designs of giant lanterns.
Source: Ichcap (https://www.unesco-ichcap.org/the-giant-lantern-festival-of-the-philippines/)
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