PHL Consulate General in San Francisco Joins 15th Annual Parol Lantern Festival and Parade

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29 December 2017 SAN FRANCISCO — The Consulate participated in the 15th Annual Parol Lantern Festival and Parade held at the Yerba Buena Gardens on December 09.

The Festival traditionally begins with parol-making workshops that are open to the public, and held at the Bayanihan Community Center throughout the month of December.  With the theme “Let Tradition Be Our Light,” around 25 local organizations gathered at St. Patrick’s Church Hall for typical Christmas fare like puto bumbong, bibingka and tsokolate.

The parade took place in Yerba Buena Gardens, ending at Jessie Square, where each contingent presented their parols to the Community to be judged for the Tala Awards for best parol lanterns.

Consul General Henry S. Bensurto, Jr. led the Consulate contingent during the Tala Awards, where the “Spark*Connect*Empower* parol, followed by a bahay kubo parol were presented to the Community, to represent the brightly shining star over Bethlehem, which sparked in the three wise men the curiosity to follow it, and meet the Christ Child and the Holy Family. 

Similar to the Consulate’s movement to Spark*Connect*Empower* the Filipino American Community, the parol also represents the Consulate’s desire to be one of the beacons that would shine a path for Filipino Americans who wish to connect with their heritage and community.  This parol is also a symbol of the Consulate’s thrust to spark the Filipino spirit in our kababayans, to encourage them to connect amongst themselves and family and kababayans back home, and to empower them to proudly promote our heritage and culture to the world. 

The Parol Lantern Festival and Parade is part of the calendar of activities of SOMA Pilipinas, a cultural district that preserves and promotes Filipino culture in San Francisco. END

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