Sinulog Festival starts with mass, parade

Organizers on Friday kicked off the 2017 Sinulog Festival in Cebu City, one of the country's biggest tourist drawers, with a mass and a parade Friday afternoon.

The mass was held at 2 p.m. Friday at the Basilica Minore del Sto. Nino and was followed with a parade at 4:30 p.m. with dancing contingents from 14 schools in the city.

The parade started from the basilica, passing through Osmena Boulevard to the Fuente Osmena rotunda and to the Cebu City Sports Center (CCSC).

Some roads leading to Osmena Boulevard were closed to vehicular traffic since 1 p.m., but were reopened as soon as the parade passed by.

Ricky Ballesteros, Sinulog Foundation Inc. (SFI) executive director, said the opening of the Sinulog Festival went on smoothly.

The Sinulog festival will be capped with the Sinulog Grand Parade on Sunday, Jan. 15, which is expected to be watched by millions of both foreign and local spectators.

A portion of OsmeAa Boulevard will also be closed to vehicular traffic from noon to 4 p.m. on Saturday to give way to contingents of the Sinulog sa Kabataan sa Lalawigan sa Sugbo (Sinulog for the youth in Cebu Province) 2017.

The same area will be closed to vehicular traffic on Sunday for the Sinulog sa Barangay sa Dakbayan sa Sugbo (Sinulog for Cebu City Villages).

All the winners in the Sinulog sa Kabataan sa Lalawigan sa Sugbo and the Sinulog sa Barangay sa Dakbayan sa Sugbo will qualify to join the Sinulog Grand Parade on Jan. 15.

Source: Philippines News Agency