This May opens up to us so many possibilities, like spring winding down
to the warmth of the summer sun.
Among the people of the Philippines, in the Philippines as well as in
the various communities they have built from their labor, love, and
life of celebration, we have the almost nostalgic simulation of the same
festive atmosphere that is the very ingredient of their memory back in
When is the most opportune time to demonstrate this festivity—and thus,
our commitment to solidarity—than through one of our cherished Filipino
traditions, the Barrio Fiesta?
The most opportune time is the one to be held in Maui, on Kahului’s
sacred ground, sacred for its memory of the sacrifices of our people
who came to toil even long before we begin to remember the narrative of
a ‘barrio fiesta’ and what it means to us all, children of these
farmhands who came to blaze a trail for us.
The Barrio Fiesta, as in the previous ones we have had at Maui,
is going to be an occasion for cooperation, for the syncing of ideas
and manual labor, for the coordination of planning to the minutest of
details, and to the actual organization of the events for the three
days of celebration.
Indeed, the Barrio Fiesta, as it has been, must be regarded as a bridge
to our rich and complex heritage—our own way of reconnecting, our way
of valuing the roots of what we are even if for some it is just another
county fair with a different ambiance.
Replete with the power of nostalgia, that summoning of the virtues of
the past and the teaching capacity of recognized experience, the Barrio
Fiesta certainly serves as a living museum of our dynamic and living
ideas of life, community, and homeland.
There’s that undeniable love and longing for our native roots and the
desire to affirm ourselves as a group of people—peoples, in fact—that
in their variety and diversity gives uniqueness to what is deemed as
the mosaic of Philippine culture.
With everybody working together, this year’s fiesta promises to be a
victory and something to be proud of.
Let us all go to the fiesta. Let us have fun, savor the food, and enjoy
Let it not be said that our oneness is just a show-off during the
affair. Let’s extend this solidarity even after the event and continue
to make a difference not only to our fellow kakailian—our fellow
countrymen and women—but also to the rest of the community at large.
Aloha And Mabuhay!