Officials and residents of this city opened Tuesday night the 10-day celebration of the Pavvurulun Afi Festival to commemorate the feast of St. Hyacinth of Poland.
In an interview on Wednesday, Mayor Maila Ting-Que told the Philippine News Agency that the festival is not only a joyous celebration but also a form of thanksgiving for all the blessings and abundance the city has received.
The festival also features core values of unity and camaraderie among residents, she added, noting of “mending of ties” during the opening ceremony.
Some city officials, including the mayor and vice mayor, who came from separate political teams, used to bicker but have mended fences at the event.
“Pavvurulun” means togetherness, while “afi” means fire in the Ibanag dialect, which is spoken by natives of Cagayan province.
Various events were lined up as part of the festivities such as trade and food fairs, indigenous games, band concerts, civic and sports events, a beauty pageant and much more, Ting-Que said, noting that the festival is much-awaited by the locals, tourists and other visitors.
“The activity brings together various industries and businesses that showcase their unique products. Residents of the city as well as tourists are provided opportunities to see diverse products that highlight the economic side of Tuguegarao City. This shows the government’s support in the attainment of the objectives of the business sector. Year in and out, there is high participation of exhibitors as the local government unit provides free stalls to everyone who wishes to display their products,” the mayor said.
The city government values the importance of each businessman’s contribution to their economic growth, she pointed out.
Ting-Que said the festival’s opening held at the Cagayan Sports Complex has highlighted the conceptualization of pavvurulun and afi, which are the main elements that push the city residents to work hard for a bountiful harvest and be motivated in realizing individual and community goals.
Such concepts were portrayed in a special dance number participated in by hundreds of students carrying torches to symbolize fire as the origin of the town. It portrayed the historic past of the city as it pushes to the present and future, the mayor said. (PNA)