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SIMBALLAY FESTIVAL: A CELEBRATION OF CULTURE AND BOUNTIFUL HARVEST

Simballay Festival’s 22nd staging spur camaraderie among the comunity, as well as serve as venue to relive Filipino culture as shown in the wide smiles of participants.

Nabunturan relived the spirit of togetherness as locals convened at the municipal plaza to celebrate culture and bountiful harvest in the 22nd Simballay Festival. Known for having an agricultural landscape, the municipality soars above other places in the province in producing crops such as banana, coconut, and rice.

Simballay Festival kicked off last December 12, 2017 with a thanksgiving mass, blessing and inauguration of the Negosyo Center, and then a motorcade around the major thoroughfares followed.

Upon the cue of Mayor Chelita Amatong, LGU officials flew balloons into the sky and lights-on of Barangay Booths followed, marking the official opening of Simballay Festival, and leaving the audience in awe as stream of lights sparkle right before their eyes.

More people flocked to the municipal plaza at 7 pm, as ladies of Nabunturan ramped on stage, flaunting their flamboyant costumes as they stomped their feet to the beat of the drums.

The 8 maidens, competing for the Simballay Queen 2016 title, showcased the bountiful harvest in the agricultural land of Nabunturan, as well as its wondrous tourism spots during their introduction, they also danced solo during a 2-minute performance.

On the second day, the Mansaka tribe showcased their culture and practices through their dance and rituals. They also played their indigenous games where people of the municipality got the chance to watch and join them.

One of the special features of the celebration is the tribal gallery, where the attires and jewels of the Mansaka tribe are found. Special ornaments are placed inside a glass case, together with hanged bow and arrow, which they use in hunting. Musical instruments, ancestral domain map, mission and vision of their tribes were also displayed inside for people to view.

Also dotting the 4-day festival is the Christmas Choral Competition, Pista sa Ani featuring “Best Tasting Lechon” contest, Baranggayanihan: Pop Icon Lip Sync Battle, Lanog sa Nabunturan, Garbo ng Nabunturan Season 7, LGU Cup: Volleball and Basketball Championship Games, Rap and Beat Box Battle, and the unique version of indak-indak at night called Iwag sa Kadalanan, where participants wear lighted costumes.

The Barangay Booths will have an Agri-trade expo, wherein each Barangay displays crops such as bananas, coconuts, and other root crops from their own harvests throughout the festival duration.

Folks will also be delighted with nightly entertainments courtesy of local bands and Tres Marias on the last day. People hold great value of respect to each other through living in harmony: Christians, Indigenous people, and Muslims. Each in their own phase and space grow with the community. No wonder guests who came to visit always feel the warm welcome of the folks in Nabunturan.