June 2011 Festivals
See what lies in store at different festivals around the country this June.
Summer may be over, but the fun sure isn't, as there are a number of festivals to be celebrated this June. This month ushers in two nationwide holidays aside from the fiestas that will be held in different towns and provinces around the country. Here are some of the June celebrations that are held every year:
June 12, Nationwide
After 300 years of Spanish colonization, the Philippines finally became independent from Spain in June 12, 1898. 113 years later, Filipinos still celebrate this momentous occasion in history by displaying the Philippine flag outside buildings and along streets all over the country. Usually, June 12 is also a non-working holiday.
June 15-24, Daet, Camarines Norte
The town of Daet in Camarines Norte is known for the Queen of Formosa pineapple, which has a sweetness and flavor distinct from other kinds of pineapple. In order to showcase their unique produce, the people of Daet hold the colorful Pinyasan Festival, where they have pageants, parades, and dancing in the streets.
June 19, Nationwide
Rizal Day used to be celebrated in December, during national hero Dr. Jose P. Rizal's death anniversary. However a bill was passed last 2009 moving the holiday to Rizal's birthday instead. This year marks the 150th celebration of his birth.
June 28-29, Sorsogon City, Sorsogon
The Pili Festival in Sorsogon City is celebrated in honor of the city's patron saints St. Peter and St. Paul. The festivities always include a showcase of the Pili tree and the various products that come from it, like pili nut candy and oil, as the tree is indigenous to Sorsogon. During the festival there is street dancing and various performances.
Parada ng Lechon
June 24, Balayan, Batangas
The little town of Balayan in Batangas is known for their crispy lechon (roasted pig), which is why, during the feast day of the town's patron saint, St. John the Baptist, a number of roasted pigs are decorated on the spit, covered in plastic, and paraded around the streets. First, a mass is held at the Immaculate Conception Church in honor of St. John, and then the festivities begin. During the parade, the bystanders douse the participants with water as a symbol of the baptism of Christ. Once the parade is over, the townspeople feast on the roast pigs.
Feast of St. John the Baptist
June 24, San Juan City, Metro Manila
The Feast of St. John the Baptist, or Araw ng San Juan, is a festival known because of the custom of Basaan, or playfully throwing water at each other in honor of the St. John's act of baptizing Jesus Christ at the Jordan River. Today, this practice is only done in certain areas of San Juan from 7am to 12nn, though it's best to be prepared with a change of clothes or an umbrella when venturing into San Juan during this day.
Apung Iru Fluvial Festival
June 28-30, Apalit, Pampanga
The Apung Iru Fluvial Festival in Apalit, Pampanga is held in honor of St. Peter. As St. Peter was a fisherman prior to becoming an Apostle of Christ, his feast day is celebrated with a colorful fluvial parade. The image of St. Peter is set on a pagoda that is pulled down the Pampanga River by devotees called the Knights of St. Peter from it's permanent home in Barangay Capalangan to Barangay Sulipan and returned on the last day of the festival.