The provincial government of Ilocos Norte (PGIN) is set to open its annual Christmas celebration through a Capitol light-up on December 10.
With the theme “Paskuami Ditoy,” this year’s Christmas centerpiece features an installation inspired by the iconic San Agustin Church in Paoay town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site under the group of Baroque Churches of the Philippines and declared national cultural treasure in 1993.
“A traditional creche or belen is housed in a metal structure about three stories high. The second level is accessible to visitors, giving them a different view of the Capitol building and its surroundings,” said Ilocos Norte Tourism Officer Aianree Raquel citing visitors can interact with the installation, providing them a different experience in the most popular civic complex in the province.
Located at the eastern portion of the Capitol village theme park is a 45-foot Christmas tree, adorned with 200 lanterns made by the inmates of the Ilocos Norte Provincial Jail.
Around the main installation and Christmas tree, Raquel said there are also traditional indayon (hammocks) which they can use to lie down and gaze at the stars. “This attracts visitors to stop by the capitol grounds and experience the most wonderful season of the year,” he added.
Aside from the Capitol light-up, “Paskuami Ditoy” also highlights a Tupig Cook-Off in Dingras town on December 12. The cooking of the famous rice cake with glutinous rice as its base is a reminder of Christmas in this part of Luzon.
Conceptualized in 2010, the tupig cook-off aims to promote the sale of tupig among visitors and to preserve this cultural heritage.
The cook-off also encourages the innovation of traditional Ilocano cuisine, with contingents deviating from the usual lineup of tupig ingredients and using roasted peanuts, cheese, langka (jackfruit), and even gamet (Ilocos black seaweed) in their creations. (PNA)