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Two festivities held in Talisay, Batangas: The Karakol Festival and the Punlad Festival

Batangas is one of the country’s oldest provinces, having existed for over 400 years. Their colorful and interesting culture is a result of their plentiful farmland, bountiful agricultural produce, and rich history.

Talisay, Batangas

Talisay is a landlocked municipality located in Batangas’ coastal province.

The municipality covers 28.20 square kilometers (10.89 square miles), accounting for 0.91 percent of Batangas’ total area. The population was 46,238 according to the 2020 Census. This amounted to 1.59 percent of Batangas province’s total population, or 0.29 percent of the CALABARZON region’s entire population.

The Karakol Festival, for example, is held in honor of Talisay’s patron saint, San Guillermo. Karakol is a street-based religious dance that Talisay’s senior citizens predominantly perform. However, as the years’ pass, even children are joining the karako.

According to the natives, Karakol is a “sayaw sa patron” (dance to the patron). To display their love for San Guillermo, Talisay’s elderly would dance in the streets throughout town. The elders of Talisay were the first to take part in the Karakol. Later, women from many barangays joined the older residents in this devotional dancing street.

 

They have a “daang prusisyon,”  Karakol participants dance to folk and novelty music worldwide. Talisay Councilor Eddie Panghulan even wrote Tagalog lyrics for the hymn Dayang-Dayang, titled “Alay kay San Guillermo,” in which all of the words favor the patron saint.

San Guillermo Parish Church, Batangas

 

Devotees from nearby towns and even Cavite have been flocking to Talisay’s Karakol, which they refer to as their “panata.” Approximately 20 groups represented various barangays and organizations of Talisay and non-Talisayeos, with the largest group having 60 members.

 

Karakol Festival – Photo by: Pinoy Adventurista 

San Guillermo was said to be a duke’s son. He was thought to be a spoiled child who caused harm to others. Until he chose to live in a cave, clad in a metal wardrobe, and there he found repentance. Since then, he has emerged as a completely different person. San Guillermo’s icon depicts a skull on top of a bible. The skull represents his former self’s death.

 

Punlad Festival, on the other hand, honors the town’s most important product, punla or saplings (or seedlings). Talisay is known as the “Seedling Bowl” of the Philippines since it distributes seedlings to many towns and provinces. Punlad was derived from the phrase “punla sa pag-unlad.”

Punlad Festival – Photo By: Cyberspace And Time

Locals and visitors alike gathered throughout town to witness street dancers celebrate colorful and flowery costumes for the yearly Festival.

 

Talisay’s inhabitants know how to rejoice in the blessings that come their way. Every February 10th, their town fiesta celebrates either the Karakol Festival or the Punlad Festival.

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