Pintos Festival is a newly organized annual event in Bogo City, Cebu, which celebrates a popular delicacy made from corn.
The festival is a replacement of an older celebration called ‘Kuyayang Festival’, which is rooted in a traditional courtship dance festivity.
Pintos fiesta is celebrated in the latter part of May and this coincides with the town fiesta celebrating its patron saint - Saint Vincent Ferrer (May 26).
Bogo City is about 100 kilometers north of Metro Cebu, the province’s booming capital city and the center of business, education, leisure and culture.
Pintos is a very memorable delicacy for me personally since childhood. I used to help my family prepare it, of course, playfully but sincerely!
This delicacy is made of young ground corn ears mixed with some ingredients (sugar, milk, butter, ground peanuts, cheese, coconut meat, etc.) and wrapped in young corn husks. Pintos is cooked by soaking it in a boiling water for about an hour or so.
The change from Kuyayang Festival into Pintos can be attributed and reflected to the area’s major source of income – corn plantation. Bogo is endowed with wide and flat lands best for farming activities that require such land spaces.
With corn as the main agricultural product, it is just commonsense that the festival will greatly promote the product, while at the same time attract visitors from everywhere.
Pintos Festival is celebrated by the Bogohanons through a lineup of fun, interesting, colorful, frenzy and lively events.
One of such attractive events is the street dancing, which is a competition among various groups of contingents choreographed by dance teachers in the locality.
The dances express thanksgiving for the abundance of agricultural products, especially exemplified by corn. The dance steps and choreographed routine creatively portray the process of preparing the corn field, planting and harvesting of the crop.
During this harvest season of corn, traditionally, they perform the “kuyayang” dance which expresses the older ways of courtship among Bogohanons.
Although Pintos Festival changed the traditional courtship festival the former did not totally remove Kuyayang from their celebrations. In fact, Kuyayang is still performed and became an integral part of the new festival.
Main Festival Events
Every year, the officials and organizers of the festival creatively select events that compose the whole festivity. It means that each year has its unique lineup of events interesting and entertaining for everyone.
Some of these events and highlights include racing competitions, beauty contests or search for Ginoong Bogo (Mr Bogo), agricultural fare, among others.
The racing competitions by various groups or contingents include ‘bankarera’ (boat racing), Dragon Boat Race, duathlon, and other locally-invented fun games.
Certainly, pintos is the star and center of effort that promote the city, additionally, visitors can also find more natural and man-made attractions and sites in the area.
For one, Bogo is arguably has thriving agriculture and fishing industries which give rise to into the creation of three popular wharves that can accommodate the needs of transporting the agricultural and fishery produce.
The three wharves include Polambato (literally means ‘red stone’). This port can accommodate the ships and shipping vessels, while the Poblacion is for pumpboats and fishing vessels; and Nailon Port is for smaller vessels, like the bangka and pumpboats sea tours and island trips.
Religious & Recreational Sites
Aside from the usual mundane attractions, Cebuanos (or Filipinos in general) also love to visit religious sites and shrines for both religious and frivolous reasons.
In Bogo, you can find the famous Shrine of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal in la Paz (whoa, breathless!). Pious and not-so-religious guests come to see the place to light a candle, say a little prayer or the Holy Rosary at the foot of the gigantic image of the Virgin. This image is on top of the steep 100-step-climb hill.
Beach resorts, island tours & golf course
Additional attractions that you could use as a side trip are the beaches, islands, and even golf courses in and around Bogo area.
There are popular white sand beaches and resorts you can find in Bogo’s beach areas.
When in one of those resorts, you will have all the chances in the world to sight-see or navigate the surrounding by availing for rent boats or/and other water sports facilities.
You can hire or join a group via an outrigger boat (called ‘banka’ pumpboat) to sit foot on the famous islet called Capitancillo Island. It is a secluded six-hectare coralline islet reachable about 30 away by boat from Bogo.
Capitancillo is popular among divers and snorkelers due to its fecund bio-diverse marine life – various colored fishes, hard and soft corals, sea turtles, crabs, ghost shrimps, blue octopuses, among others.
The islet is being lighted by a lighthouse rebuilt in the 1950s, which is solar-powered. It is one of the places where you can have full silence except for the lulling waves and the soothing gentle sound of the sea breeze.
If you wish to get further details on the activities, festivals, sites and places to relax in Bogo, you may use the following phone numbers:
City Mayor Office of Bogo City:
Phone (032) 251 2001; 434 8688
You can take a bus from the capital (Cebu North Bus Terminal) which will take about two hours to reach the city center of Bogo. It is also quite accessible by sea from Masbate, Daanbantayan and Bantayan Island if you prefer or find it more convenient.
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Have a fantastic holiday!