Do you know that the First Philippine Republic (aka Malolos Republic) was founded inside the Barasoain Church in Malolos, Bulacan? Happened in Jan. 23, 1899 this became the very first democratic constitution in the whole continents of Asia and Africa. Bulacan is only few hours away from Manila but it is a shame I have never been here. I really wish to see this place but it seems no chance came my way until a media tour invite recently made it happen. Together with fellow bloggers, tv reporters, newspaper writers and their respective cameramen we went on a 2-day-1-night trip to join Vamos A Malolos, a project led by the Office of the City Mayor and the city's official tourism slogan which aims to spread the awareness of the huge role of Malolos in Philippine history.
Trips like this is really close to my heart because I started blogging six years ago as a heritage advocate long before I got bitten by the travel bug. I have been around the country seeing lots of pieces of our country's roots: Ilocos, Bacolod, Iloilo, Sagada, Palawan, Cebu, Cagayan de Oro et cetera. Compared to the rest Bulacan is one of those that really posses a crowning glory when it comes to promoting patriotism in this age.
The Vamos A Malolos is a 4-month celebration done every last quarter of the year (starting every September then ends January) where various arts, culture and tourism events are held. There are three highlights of the celebration: Parangal sa Kongreso, Pistang Pasko sa Malolos and Fiesta Republica. The first two mentioned are done already so we got to cover the last one. After our lunch we headed to a quick city tour. Malolos has so much to offer when it comes to heritage. I will prepare a separate post for that soon.
Of course what is a trip to Malolos, Bulacan without having a photo taken in the famous Barasoain Church? After our tour, we headed to the Malolos Sports and Convention Center to join a few of their events that day.
Timpalak-Awi ng Makabayang Pilipino is a choral siniging copetition aimed to pupularize and revive the nationalist songs of the century participated by different choral groups in the country.
I just can't believe I got to see the famous Philippine Madrigal Singers in other place than in Malolos! They got really great voice. I am so amazed of how they sing our local songs with grace and compassion.
The Ginoo At Binibini Republica Filipina, a pageant competed by representatives of different individuals around Luzon. This year we saw good-looking and talented individuals compete from Tarlac, Malabon, Nueva Ecija, Zambales and Bataan.
We slept almost close to midnight super tired but happy for the experience of getting to know Malolos.
I woke up in the morning with this sunset view from Club Royale Hotel where we stayed. I almost don't want to leave but we have to take our breakfast early to witness two events that can only be found in Malolos.
First is the Araw ng Repubikang Filipino 1899 Commemorative Rite - this is the commemoration of the historic founding of the 1st Philippine Republic aka Malolos Republic on 01/23/1899 at the Patio of Barasoain Church. For this year, it is DILG Sec. Mar Roxas who graced the occasion and leads the flag raising and wreath-laying ceremonies.
Second is the Dulansangan 2015 - a national street dance - drama competition showcasing the different historical events in pursuit of Philippine freedom and sovereignty. Open to all provinces, this dance - drama is not he usual street dance or street pageantry but it is a parade of historical vignettes being staged in the streets depicting the distinctive historical events of the group's respective locality.
These are just a few events that Malolos has to offer to everyone who wants to join there celebration. The City of Malolos dreams of one day it is not be them who is celebrating the very first Philippine Republic every 23rd of January but the whole nation as well. For more information, this is the official link of City Tourism, Arts, Culture and Sports Office of Malolos - http://www.maloloscity.gov.ph/.