I don’t think I’ll ever get tired of saying, and praising, that the Philippines has got so many fiestas going on from the start of a year up to the end of it. Even as our own GenSan is gearing up for this year’s Kalilangan Festival happening next month (and is currently celebrating with its Barangay Bula our very own local Sinulog in honor of Bula Parish’s patron), the City of Koronadal just north of us is concluding their very own week-long foundation anniversary, the Hinugyaw Festival. And the culminating event for them is a “fiesta within a fiesta” of sorts, called Piyesta Kolon Datal which took place on the evening of Wednesday this week.

As TV Patrol SOCSKSARGEN tells it, a veritable large crowd assembled on the main thoroughfare of Koronadal City on the night of January 10, not at all bothered by the lateness of the hour as they waited for the participant groups for this year’s Kolon Datal street dance competition, the ending capstone of the 2018 Hinugyaw festival. The dance troupes, representing high schools (and a youth organization) from either South Cotabato and the neighboring provinces of Sultan Kudarat and Maguindanao, were all bedecked in colorful costumes and carried elaborate props; all the best to entrance the audience and hopefully be declared the winner.

The Piyesta Kolon Datal comprised of two segments, the parade in which the groups danced along the streets of the city, and the Grand Showdown which involved the more elaborate routines, done at the parade terminus of the South Cotabato Sports Complex. SOUTHCOTABATONEWS.com reports that four dance groups performed in Kolon Datal, namely: Esperanza National High School of Esperanza, Sultan Kudarat; Bambad National High School from Isulan; Saravia National High School of Koronadal; and the Salam Youth Organization from Sultan Kudarat, Maguindanao.

Following some stellar presentation numbers, from a representation of the Flores de Mayo to a retrospective of Koronadal’s history, the winners were finally announced. Third runner-up went to the Salam Youth Organization, worth P75,000 in cash prize. Esperanza National High School won Second runner-up and received P100,000. First runner-up was awarded to Saravia National High School along with a P150,000 prize. Finally, Isulan’s Bambad National High School was declared the Champion of Piyesta Kolon Datal, winning P200,000 to be distributed among themselves.

The Hinugyaw Festival, which includes the celebration for the foundation anniversary of Koronadal City, had events lined up for residents and tourists to enjoy as far back as December of last year. Now, even with the Hinugyaw proper concluded, there are still some post-festival commemorative sporting events happening later this month, such as the Open Golf Tournament on January 14 at the Paraiso Golf Course, or the Mindanao Leg of the World Archery – Philippines Tournament at the City Hall Grounds from January 25 to 28.

Photo courtesy of Hinugyaw Festival FB page

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