Celebrating Cagayan de Oro (CDO) City’s Higalaay Festival, PLDT and Smart Communications, Inc. (Smart), through its value brand TNT, recently partnered with the local government to bring a grander fiesta experience for Kagay-anons. Thousands joined the revelry, particularly the colorful street dancing competition, which featured TNT endorser and matinee idol Joshua Garcia. 

“We sincerely express our gratitude to PLDT, Smart and TNT for bringing happiness to Kagay-anons, through Joshua Garcia, as we celebrated the Higalaay Festival in honor of our beloved patron saint, Sr. San Agustin,” said CDO City Mayor Rolando “Klarex” Uy. 

Despite daily rains, crowds stayed to enjoy the lively performances of the street dancers, along with exciting activities held all over the city, including the International Dragon Boat Competition, Civic Military Parade and Float Competition, and the much-anticipated Miss Cagayan de Oro pageant. 

For many, this year’s Higalaay Festival reignited the spirit of golden friendship (panaghigalaay) that the city has been known for. Kagay-anon Mike John Paul Caña, who enjoyed the street dancing competition with friends, shared, “The fiesta showcases our city’s vibrant culture, but what truly made this experience memorable is how it strengthened our friendship and sense of unity.”

Over the years, the PLDT group has consistently backed this annual event, celebrating friendship, culture and history. “We extend our heartfelt gratitude to the city government for their continued trust. The success of the Higalaay Festival 2023 is a testament to the strong collaboration among various sectors who are united in a common goal – to make this year’s celebration worth remembering,” said Bernardo Deatras, Smart’s Senior Customer Development Manager. 

Through PLDT and Smart’s internet connectivity, core events were also streamed live on CDO City Information Office’s Facebook page, allowing everyone to join the festivities even from the comfort of their homes.