Hundreds joined the members of BIBAK Association of Manitoba in the first International Grand Cañao held at the Victoria Hotel and Convention Centre this weekend.
Cañao is a popular traditional feast celebrated in the Philippine Cordillera for good harvest and progress or for healing of the sick.
The event showcased live cultural and traditional performances that were authentic of each of the group/tribe comprising the entire Cordillera region– Benguet, Ifugao, Bontoc, Kalinga and Apayao (BIBAK).
BIBAK President Virginia Gayot said their group holds Cañao every year in Manitoba but this year was bigger. Grand Cañao marks their group’s 25th anniversary.
“Our Grand Cañao was very memorable because we invited other BIBAK friends around the globe. It celebrates and reinforces our commitment to promote and show our native culture to the community and to the world. It also embodies the unity of us, Cordillerans in Manitoba, to preserve and pass our heritage to the new generation.”
Dubbed “Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow,” the Grand Cañao presented the following cultural dances: Tallak and Bendian from Benguet; Pagadout and Dinuy-A from Ifugao, Takik and Eagle from from Bontoc; Tadok and Talip from Apayao; and Banga from Kalinga.
Assistant Secretary lawyer Ana Marie Rafael of the Presidential Communications Operations Office came all the way from the Philippines to grace the event.
Another highlight of the event was the recognition of the contribution of BIBAK pioneer founders and elders in Manitoba.
Music from some of Winnipeg’s local artists and from talented members of BIBAK were also presented.
There was also fashion show and community dancing. Among those at the dance floor were Member of Parliament Robert Falcon Ouellette and Vickar Automotive Group’s Toba Vickar.
Lord Vincent Novencido and Florence Ticzon served as master of ceremonies. There were door prizes, raffle draws and raffle prizes.
Following the Grand Cañao held on July 6th, the association also hosted a community picnic on July 7th in Pine Falls Manitoba.
Here’s a glimpse of some of the highlights of the colorful event in photos. (Photo credit: Nelson Manalili)