community is scheduled for Saturday, May 5, 2012 at Kapiolani Park. This year’s theme is “Pagdiriwang at Pasasalamat” or “Celebration and Thanksgiving.”
According to Rose Churma, FilCom Center President and COO, the theme clearly describes the sentiments of hundreds of volunteers who work together every year to make the fiesta and parade become a reality.
“All the hard work, countless hours of meetings, detailed preparations and coordination with dozens of participants and vendors still makes us smile and celebrate when we witness the crowd revel and participate in the merrymaking of these festivities,” she says. “As we prepare for the 20th Fiesta and Parade, indeed there is reason to celebrate and to give thanks that the Filipino community has pulled together every year to stage this popular event.”
Jean Jeremiah, the Fiesta’s chair of publicity and promotions, says that planning for this year’s event included the “hands-on touch and exciting mood” of several young professionals from the Filipino Junior Chamber of Commerce. These young professionals took over the reins from former FilCom Center president Toy Arre and were advised by Churma.
“The theme was created to give thanks for all the past 20 years of hard work and dedication to carry on our Filipino culture, tradition and history,” Jeremiah says. “At the same time, we will also celebrate the 10th anniversary of the FilCom Center which was formally inaugurated in June 2002.”
Fun for the Entire Family
The day-long event kicks off with a colorful parade starting from Fort DeRussy at 9 am and ending at Kapiolani Park. The Parade will include five colorful floats from various Filipino organizations, including the United Filipino Council of Hawaii (UFCH), the Oahu Filipino Community Council (OFCC), the Council of Visayan Organizations (COVO) and the Filipino American League of Engineers & Architects (FALEA). Roland Casamina and Eddie Flores will lead the parade as grand marshals.
Following the parade is the fiesta, which typically lasts from mid-morning to late afternoon at the park. The program is scheduled to start at 10 am with welcoming remarks from FilCom officials as well as Gov. Neil Abercrombie.
In a proud display of various aspects of Filipino culture, organizers have planned for a myriad of activities, including a keiki village, a Community Health and Wellness Fair, various food booths and day-long entertainment featuring local and Philippine-based performing artists.
The “Barangay ng Mga Bata” or keiki village, will offer games and storytelling, while native arts, crafts and artifacts from the various cultural provinces and islands in the Philippines will be on display. These include the Tagalog region, Cordillera, Timpuyog, Mindanao and the Visayan region.
Headlining the line-up of singers, performers and recording artists will be GMA stars Richard Rama Gutierrez and King Jay R.
“They will be part of the parade and you can also watch them perform during the Fiesta program at Kapiolani Park,” says Churma. “The GMA stars will be available to greet and sign autographs with their fans.”
In addition to the GMA stars, there will be an all-day program of entertainment with various local performers. The list includes Lani Misalucha, Jordan Segundo, the Royal Hawaiian Band and the popular Banda Kawayan. To keep the younger ones entertained, there will be Nix Performing Arts students who will perform a hip-hop number and a Tinikling performance by the modern Tekniqlingz Crew. There will also be a Zumba demo performance for those Zumba enthusiasts.
As with any community celebration, food will be a main draw. The Fiesta promises plenty of opportunities to sample delicious Filipino cuisine, with food provided by well-known food vendors like Golden Coin, Nayong Pilipino, Claires Lunch Plate, Lasang Pilipinas and Ramar Food International.
Several businesses will be capitalizing on the opportunity to market their products and services to the expected throng of attendees. Companies that will have their own display booths include Hawaiian Airlines, Western Union, Ayala Land, Mega World, Island Insurance, Central Pacific Bank, Remington College and many more. Fiesta officials expect the magnitude of the event, the significant exposure and various opportunities for public contact to be a boon to participating organizations.
See You at the Fiesta!
The Filipino culture is essentially on display during the Fiesta and Parade for all to see. As such, it is a great opportunity to share with friends and visitors the Filipino culture and to experience it in song, dance, food and costumesto name just a few.
Because the event is the largest and most visible Filipino gathering in the state, organizers emphasize the importance of Filipinos to come out and support the 20th Annual Fiesta and Parade. In addition, the Fiesta & Parade is a relatively inexpensive venue and form of entertainment for the entire family.
“We hope you will support and be part of us, as we bring to Hawaii the biggest event in the Filipino community,” Churma says.
For more information about the Fiesta, please contact Churma at 680-0451 or Randy Cortez at 342-7685 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.