Kaliga Festival Upholds Cultural Heritage of Indigenous Tribes in the New Normal
Kenneth Mheil Mangaya- Ay | July 23, 2020
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This bright and cheerful celebration of plenitude and success originates from the city’s Manobo and Higaonon roots, their way of life and conventions through customs, and road moving. Kaliga is a thanksgiving festivity of the Higaonon, signifying “To Thank God” for the favors, abundant harvests, effective hunts, campaigns, the establishment of new chieftains, the birth of tykes and any recuperations from hardship and sickness. The customary Kaliga Festival lasts for five to seven days. The main parts include Panawagan, an opening prayer. It will be recited or in a song (limbay). It will be followed by Dasang, a fast chanting. It will start with an adoration to God Almighty, God the Father “Amay Day” followed by reciting the history of the famous people, heroes, and the dwelling place. Then, the Offering of Symbols, a bonfire or lighting of the torch and different dances like Inamo (the body moves like a clever monkey), Binanog (whirling dance), Clever Mother Hen, Inuwang, Planting and Harvest and Magical Dance.
Kaliga Festival before the pandemic was celebrated for the whole month of July. It gets bigger every year with more participants and events giving life to the city such as Kaliga Street dancing Parade and Tableu Competition, Kaliga Musical Festival, Miss Gingoog Tourism, Mural Painting Contest, Live Band, Foam Party, Fantasy Float Parade, Trail Run Challenge, Agro Fair, and more. But due to the pandemic, the supposed month-long celebration was cut short to a week with strict implementation of the IATF Guidelines according to April Ben Licayan, Local and Arts Council Coordinator, “Agro Fair, Tree Planting Activity, Mural Painting Contest, Sayaw Kabataan with only five members per group, Singampo of the Higaonon Tribal Council and IPMR, New Normal Modified Kaliga Presentation, and City Mayor’s Charter Message were among the activities this year Jubilee Year.”
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