City Gov’t stages Grand Santacruzan
TACLOBAN CITY – Eleven Barangay Contingents participated in the Annual Grand Santacruzan of the City Government on Tuesday, held to mark the end of the month-long observance of the Santa Cruz de Mayo– a traditional religious celebration that has become both a tourist and crowd-drawer for this City.
The late afternoon event organized by the City Government under Mayor Cristina G. Romualdez to highlight the religious fervor and intimate devotion of Taclobanons to the Blessed Virgin Mary, featured a procession of Sagalas (beautiful maidens) and elaborately-decorated arches adorned with flowers which wound its way through City’s main thoroughfares
The traditional procession also featured Children donning Angel Costumes who earlier participated in the Flores de Mayo celebrations in their respective barangays.
Twelve Miss Tacloban Candidates and their escorts also took part in the festivities to provide a glimpse of the Fiesta Beauty Pageant which will have its Grand Coronation on June 24, 2017.
Highlight of the festivities was the crowning of the 2017 Reyna Elena and the announcement of Special Awards at the Balyu-an Ampitheater; winners received trophies, sash and cash prizes.
Ayesa R. Reglo of 23-A P. Burgos Street was crowned Reyna Elena 2017 and received a cash prize of P 8,000. First Runner-up Sharmaine Mae Belle H. Reyes of Barangay 96 Calanipawan received P 6,000 and Second Runner-up Marlou Marcellana of Brgy. 77 Fatima got P 4,000 cash prize. The rest of the contestants received P 1,000 each.
The Grand Champion honors went to Barangay 39 Calvary Hill which received P 50,000 cash prize; 1st Runner-Up was 42-A Quarry which won P 30,000 and Brgy. 96 Calanipawan won 2nd Runner-up and got P 20,000 cash prize. Third and Fourth Runners-up were Barangay 2 Jones Street and Barangay 6 Sto. Nino Extension which got P15,000 and P10,000, respectively. Consolation prizes of P 5,000 was given to the remaining barangays.
Special Awardees were Brgy. 6 for Most Participated Barangay, Brgy. 96 for the Most Disciplined Barangay, Barangay 39 -Best Arch and Brgy. 42-A. for Best Lantern.
City Tourism Officer Celica Quebec said that they sought the help of the Leyte-Samar Heritage Society so they can come up with an authentic and traditional staging of the Santacruzan this year. For the first time in the history of the Annual Grand Santacruzan, Generators were banned during the procession to keep it solemn, while the use of indigenous materials was encouraged.
Quebec added that they encouraged the barangay contingents to involve the youth in the festivities to help in the historical and cultural preservation initiatives of the City Government, as this is one the thrusts of Mayor Romualdez. –HENRY JAMES G. ROCA/CIO, Photos by Mike Espina/CIO