Although only 12 of the city’s 26 barangays joined the Parada ng mga Barangay Competition last Friday, February 20, 2009 to herald the opening of the 2009 Kalilangan Festival, the preparations of the Deparment of Education under Schools Division Superintendent Estrella Lariosa more than made up for their lean number.

Then of course, the participating barangays’ enthusiasm and fervor made a huge difference in ensuring that the start of the city’s celebration of its 70th Foundation Anniversary would be as meaningful and as significant as Kalilangan opening pasts.

Kalilangan 2009 Oval Stage

Cash prizes of P5,000 per contingent were given by the Festival Director Orman Manansala to Barangays City Heights (Most Entertaining), and Calumpang (Most Organized.  The Grand Prize of P10,000 was awarded to Barangay Dadiangas North for being the Most Colorful.

Barangay Calumpang - Most Organized

Barangay Calumpang which won as Most Organized Barangay with Kapitan Cirilo Forones

Brgy City Heights Rondalla with Capt Lulu Casabuena

ABC President & Brgy City Heights Captain Lulu Casabuena singing with their Rondalla

Barangay Dadiangas North - Most Colorful

Barangay Dadiangas North’s Most Colorful Contingent

Here are some of the pictures taken earlier that afternoon.  Click on each for larger views.

The colorful barangaysBarangay Lagao ContingentTV Special Hosts Honey Acharon & Mario ValentinoBarangay FatimaBarangay Dadiangas EastBarangay San IsidroLakambini & Lakandula CandidatesKagawad Templado & Brangay San Isido Captain Renato Salan

When dusk came and the stars started to come out,  Congresswoman Darlene Custodio addressed the crowd gathered infront of the stage. Then, dance numbers followed from the DepEd depicting the arrival of General Paulino Santos seventy years ago and something from China courtesy of the Junior Cultural Academy.

Mayor Jun banging the gong

Later, Mayor Jun Acharon banged a gong to signal the opening of the Kalilangan 2009 Festival.  At that very instant, a  ball of fire came down from the roof of the stage down to the ground below which lighted a pile of dried wood, creating one big bonfire.  The Lagao National High School Dancers then started their Kalilang dance while up in the sky, a magnificent fireworks also began wowing the hundreds of generals down below.

City Officials Atendido, Milleza, Dospueblos, Santos, Custodio, Acharon, Dr. Rose, Casabuena & Mayor Jun

City Councilor Richard Atendido, Councilor Monching Milleza, City Administrator Mar Dospueblos, Councilor Meg Santos, Congresswoman Darlene, Councilor Odjok Acharon, Dr. Rose Acharon, Councilor Lulu Casabuena and Mayor Jun all smile for Bariles’ camera

More pictures below.  Click on them for larger views.

Ecumenical PrayerMayor Jun AcharonDarlene with Lakan & Lakambini CandidatesHeritage Park