Improvements in Panagbenga cultural showdown pushed

City officials and organizers of the Panagbenga, popularly known as the Baguio flower festival, are contemplating on making the Panagbenga cultural showdown one of the major events in the future staging of the month-long festivities.

Mayor Mauricio G. Domogan, who also chairs the Baguio Flower Festival Foundation, Inc. (BFFFI), said the successful conduct of the first Panagbenga cultural showdown last February 23, 2019 proved that it could also be a major crowd drawer, thus, the need for the organizers to study on how to improve the participation of other tribes inside and outside the region and the participation of people who really value the preservation and protection of the country’s rich culture and traditions.

“We will surely make the Panagbenga cultural showdown one of the major highlights of the flower festival in the coming years so that our efforts to help in empowering our constituents to preserve and protect their rich culture and traditions will be enhanced for the benefit of the present and future generations of inhabitants of the city. We have to effectively and efficiently transfer to our youth the rich culture and tradition that we were able to inherit from our forefathers,” Mayor Domogan stressed.

He asserted that the cultural showdown will be open to all interested cultural groups coming from different parts of the country wanting to avail of the magnitude of the Panagbenga to promote their own culture and traditions because cultural preservation and protection is one of the major advocacies of the organizers of the flower festival.

According to him, Panagbenga organizers are looking forward to the participation of more groups not only from the city but also from other parts of the country who want to advance the promotion of the culture and traditions of their place because it is through the said avenue that people will be able to appreciate the rich culture and traditions of the different tribes that are based in the different parts of the country.

Domogan added that numerous individuals and groups want to take advantage of the status of the Panagbenga in the promotion of their culture and traditions that is why a good number of groups continue to signify their intention to participate in major events that have been lined up for the city’s crowd drawing event.

The Panagbenga was founded over two decades ago purposely to have a major crowd drawing event during the lean tourism months so that there will be a continuous influx of tourists to the city that will help in sustaining the robust growth of the local tourism industry which has been pinpointed as the city’s economic driver through the past several years.

Domogan expressed confidence that more cultural groups will be enticed to join the future conduct of similar activities in the city that will help in informing and educating the residents and tourists alike on the culture and traditions being practiced by the different  ethno-linguistic groups that are located in the different parts of the country.

Panagbenga is the only festival in the country that was included in the elite of festivals in the world that form part of the International Festivals Association, a prestigious international group that recognizes the important festivals that are being conducted in the different parts of the world and their contribution to the state of the tourism industry in certain areas where the said festivals are being done.  - Dexter A. See