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Filipino community celebrates Philippines Independence Day in Pincher Creek

Filipino community celebrates Philippines Independence Day in Pincher Creek
The first Philippines Independence Day Heritage Festival was organized by local Filipino residents in Pincher Creek to commemorate the country’s independence from Spain on June 12, 1898.
The first Philippines Independence Day Heritage Festival was organized by local Filipino residents in Pincher Creek to commemorate the country’s independence from Spain on June 12, 1898.
IMAGE: Submitted photo by John Lazo
Filipino community in Pincher Creek celebrating Philippines Independence Day
IMAGE: Submitted photo by John Lazo
Filipino community in Pincher Creek celebrating Philippines Independence Day

Filipino community celebrates Philippines Independence Day in Pincher Creek

By Somya Lohia
By Somya Lohia
Shootin’ the Breeze Reporter
Shootin’ the Breeze Shootin’ the Breeze Reporter
June 16, 2024
June 16, 2024

The Filipino community in Pincher Creek and surrounding areas came together to celebrate the 126th anniversary of Philippines independence on Saturday.

The first Philippines Independence Day Heritage Festival was organized by local Filipino residents to commemorate the country’s independence from Spain on June 12, 1898. The inaugural event drew attendees from nearby communities including Fort Macleod, Crowsnest Pass, Lethbridge and even Calgary.

“It’s an annual celebration of our freedom and independence as a nation,” says John Lazo, one of the organizers. “We want to extend the culture and values of Filipinos by sharing it through food, fun and different festivities.”

The event was attended by distinguished guests, including representatives from the Philippines consulate and other Filipino associations. The town’s mayor, Don Anderberg, also attended.

Pig roast at wedding venue — the Cowley Lions Campground Stockade near Pincher Creek in southwestern Alberta.

The festival began at 9 a.m. in Town Hall Park and continued until the evening. It featured traditional Filipino dances and songs that highlighted the unity and cultural richness of the Filipino people.

“We started off with a mini volleyball tournament to bridge the gap between Filipinos and non-Filipinos,” says Lazo. 

He notes there are about 200 officially registered Filipinos in Pincher Creek, but the actual number, including unregistered residents, workers and students, likely exceeds that figure.

 

Also read | Snodgrass kicks off annual flower barrel contest

 

He expresses gratitude for support from the Town of Pincher Creek and local businesses for helping in organizing the event successfully. 

“The Town of Pincher Creek has been very supportive, especially the recreation office, which provided us free access to their facilities,” he says. “We had two weeks to prepare for this. It was a last-minute thing, but we managed to get the word out.”

Aerial view of the Cowley Lions Campground on the Castle River in southwestern Alberta

The success of the event has set a precedent for future celebrations as the organizers are planning to continue it as an annual event.

“This is the first and for sure it won’t be the last,” Lazo says. “We just hope to involve everybody in Pincher Creek and our neighbouring towns to extend the culture and values of the Filipinos.”

The Philippines Independence Day Heritage Festival celebrated the Filipino community’s heritage and strengthened bonds within the diverse Pincher Creek community. With such enthusiastic participation and support, the festival promises to be a cherished annual tradition.

The Filipino community in Pincher Creek and surrounding areas came together to celebrate the 126th anniversary of Philippines independence on Saturday.

The first Philippines Independence Day Heritage Festival was organized by local Filipino residents to commemorate the country’s independence from Spain on June 12, 1898. The inaugural event drew attendees from nearby communities including Fort Macleod, Crowsnest Pass, Lethbridge and even Calgary.

“It’s an annual celebration of our freedom and independence as a nation,” says John Lazo, one of the organizers. “We want to extend the culture and values of Filipinos by sharing it through food, fun and different festivities.”

The event was attended by distinguished guests, including representatives from the Philippines consulate and other Filipino associations. The town’s mayor, Don Anderberg, also attended.

The festival began at 9 a.m. in Town Hall Park and continued until the evening. It featured traditional Filipino dances and songs that highlighted the unity and cultural richness of the Filipino people.

“We started off with a mini volleyball tournament to bridge the gap between Filipinos and non-Filipinos,” says Lazo. 

He notes there are about 200 officially registered Filipinos in Pincher Creek, but the actual number, including unregistered residents, workers and students, likely exceeds that figure.

 

Also read | Snodgrass kicks off annual flower barrel contest

 

He expresses gratitude for support from the Town of Pincher Creek and local businesses for helping in organizing the event successfully. 

“The Town of Pincher Creek has been very supportive, especially the recreation office, which provided us free access to their facilities,” he says. “We had two weeks to prepare for this. It was a last-minute thing, but we managed to get the word out.”

Ad for Blinds and More in Pincher Creek and Crowsnest Pass

The success of the event has set a precedent for future celebrations as the organizers are planning to continue it as an annual event.

“This is the first and for sure it won’t be the last,” Lazo says. “We just hope to involve everybody in Pincher Creek and our neighbouring towns to extend the culture and values of the Filipinos.”

The Philippines Independence Day Heritage Festival celebrated the Filipino community’s heritage and strengthened bonds within the diverse Pincher Creek community. With such enthusiastic participation and support, the festival promises to be a cherished annual tradition.

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