June 20, 2024

In one of the trivia questions given by Chino Chow at the “Media Fellowship Night,” at Hotel Supreme, this is one of the many activities in the Spring Festival calendar  for 2024,  he asked for  ways of greeting Happy New Year.

It is “San Nin Faai Lok”in Cantonese and “Xinnian Kuallei” in Mandarin. I hope I got that right as there are also many ways on how the greetings are  written. 

“Kung Hey Fat Choi!” everyone.

The Filipino Chinese community started the year of the Wood Dragon by launching it during the flag raising ceremony at City Hall on Feb. 5. This 15 day celebration is a partnership  between the city government of Baguio and the BaguioFilipino Chinese community.

The celebrations in Baguio started 26 years ago. Who could resist the excitement  of watching a very colorful parade with candies being tossed at you and watching a mesmerizing lion dance? Or stopping by the road to see a Lion dance and be amazed at how it gets the red envelop (hong bao or ang pao) into its mouth accompanied by the strong beating of the drums?

Parang gusto mo na rin sumayaw kagaya sa Ati-atihan. We stop albeit momentarily to watch the enthralling performance of the dancers mimicking the behavior of a lion, with head and eyes twitching. It is certainly riveting. It takes hours of martial arts and acrobatic practice to perfect the energetic movement of the dancers. Kudos to the dancers and coaches.

The donations you contribute to its cause will surely bring  prosperity and good health to  the donor. The universe will give you good luck in return.

The other activities for the week were the barangay gift sharing in Barangays Ambiong and San Antonio and the Chinese New Year evening mass at the Bell Church.

For today, Feb. 11, and for next Sunday, Feb. 18, Chinese food galore is slated at the Session Road thru the Spring Festival Little Chinatown. This activity is  spearheaded by the Association of Baguio-Filipino Youth (ABFY) headed by Chino Chow.

The grand celebration will happen on Feb 13 commencing with the “soft launching”  and “turnover of the holograms and standees” to Baguio Museum’s  President  Peter Ng by the People’s Republic of China (PROC) Consulate in Laoag Head of Post Consul Ren Faqiang.

The grand parade follows  in the afternoon. The culminating activity for the Chinese Lunar New Year is a dinner reception.

“We are grateful to our media friends who were instrumental in making the yearly  celebrations of Chinese New Year a success,” said Ng, chairman of the Spring Festival executive committee and President of the  Baguio Filipino Chamber of Commerce, the Baguio Cantonese Association in CAR.

 “Our goal is to promote better understanding and cooperation between  the Filipino and Chinese communities creating a stronger bond,  fostering unity peace and prosperity.”

In championing this goal,” Mark Jefferson Ng explains, nine other organizations joined  hands like the Association for Philippine-China Understanding (APCU) Baguio chapter headed by George Ong; Megapines Realty & Development Inc and the Baguio Patriotic School both headed by Fernando Tiong; the Filipino-Chinese Amity Club Baguio chapter headed by  Thomas Kho; the Bell Church headed by Albert Leong, the Filipino-Chinese Shin Lian Association Baguio chapter headed by Alex Sia;  the Philippine Chinese Chamber of Commerce & Industry,  La Union and Baguio chapters under Nelson Go; the Tiok Lim Grand Mason Baguio chapter under Mike Tiu; the ABFY under Chino;and SM Supermalls of SM City Baguio under Marc Janssen Pe.

Other members of the Filipino Chinese community who were present  were Kane Chanbonpin, Nel Marilla and Leng Leng Cu. Dr.  Lucy Huang of Chongqing and  PIA-CAR Director Helen Tibaldo.

Internationally-certified Filipino Law of Attraction facilitator Maria Teresa Trinidad and certified and accredited Feng Shui master and consultant Adriel Jose Angelo Trinidad, both mother and son who belong to the Lightcatchers Crystals explained the principles of feng shui.

They have an office at the market for those interested. Adriel gave an explanation on the complexities of feng  shui and a better understanding of  5 elements and the 12 animals of the calendar in relation to Feng Shui.

Of course, the fellowship will not be complete without the distribution of “tikoy”  or the Chinese New Year’s sticky cake which  symbolizes a healthy bond within family and relationships.

Here is to wishing everyone prosperity and good health. More goodwill to come. (Photos by Darwin Ng) – Stella Maria L. de Guia