February 29, 2024
An Ibaloy ritual called “dawit” was performed by the Ibaloy elders for the great grandchildren of Mateo and Bayosa Cariño on Feb. 22 at the Ibaloy Heritage Garden.
The children of Ibaloy chieftain Mateo Cariño and wife, Bayosa, namely Scioco, Josefa, Dr. Jose, Donato, Sabina, Helena, Castro, and Kinja were represented by the great grandchildren of the couple, namely (from left) Bernardo Okubo, Jr., Cresencio C. Pacalso, Benjamin de Guzman, Judith Pavia, Gloria Antoinette Hamada, Leo Camilo, Linda Grace Cariño, Michiko Hamada, Ronald Perez, Joanna Cariño, and Jill Cariño.

The great Ibaloy nation from Baguio City and Benguet celebrated the Ivadoy Day 2022 at the Ibaloy Heritage Garden at Burnham Park on Feb. 23 with a theme: “Mansaksahi tan mantitinudong kitjo pansegshan ni kaivadoyan”.

A photograph of the great Ibaloy chieftain Mateo Cariño in his Kafagway rancheria, which would soon be recognized by the United States Supreme Court in its ruling in 1909,acknowledging the land rights of the clan leader over what has become Camp John Hay, is displayed prominently at the abong of the Ibaloy Heritage Garden at Burnham Park.

The celebration was marked with the beating of the gongs that followed a day after descendants and heirs of the great Ibaloy chieftain Mateo Cariño held a “dawit” a century-old ritual of the Ibaloys to call on the spirits of their ancestor while the elders performed the “keshew”, another form of Ibaloy ritual.

An “owik” was performed before the formal opening of the grand celebration of the Ibaloy Day on Feb. 23.

Organized by the Onjon Ni Ivadoy Association, Inc. led by its president, Max Edwin Bugnay, in coordination with the City Government of Baguio, this year’s celebration was also a reunion of sorts after similar gatherings were prohibited during the past two years since the declaration of the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020.

Baguio Vice Mayor Faustino Olowan also performed the tayaw.
An exhibit about the Ibaloys is also mounted at the Ibaloy Heritage Garden.

Esteemed guests and political leaders joined the celebration where they performed the “tayaw” and gave inspirational messages to the Ibaloys.
The celebration of the Ibadoy Day on Feb. 23 has significance to the Ibaloys in Baguio and its environs, as it was on Feb. 23, 1909 that the United States Supreme Court released its decision on the Native Title which recognized the legitimacy of the claims of the old man Cariño.  

Proud Ibaloys Baguio Councilor Popo Cosalan and Benguet Board Member Robert Namoro delivered their inspirational messages.
Department of Education-Cordillera Director Estela Cariño, also a proud Ibaloy, and her team joined the Feb. 23 celebration.

Thanks to the former city council for approving Resolution 395 s. of 2009 declaring Feb. 23 as Ibaloy Day. 
This year’s Ibaloy Day was culminated with “indusek”, a form of ritual performed by the elders on Feb. 24 to call for protection and more blessings from above. (Photos: Ofelia C. Empia)

Baguio Rep. Mark Go also joined the celebration. – Deped photo
Baguio Councilor Elaine Sembrano and Marlene de Castro representing Mayor Benjamin Magalong were also in attendance.