In Zambales, many people look forward to the Yuletide season. The province is home to creative and resourceful people and throughout the year, these attributes are showcased in many occasions, such as Christmas and festivities.
Of the towns, Cabangan, Zambales is one of the places worth visiting during the Holidays. Many people are excited every first of December because it beckons the lighting of the gigantic Christmas tree in front of the municipal hall.
The activity has been done for a couple of years now and so many people are awestruck with the effort the town’s officials and folks are putting in to the display of lights and colors.
Locally, Christmas is never the same after Cabangan started showcasing its tree. It is more than just a display of light and wonder; it is an exhibition of the townspeople’s ingenuity, creativity and teamwork to spread the Yuletide cheers with the public, local or foreign alike.
The lighting ceremony makes way for different Christmas-related activities. For instance, the town holds different competitions (chorale, singing and dancing), balls (such as “Balikbayan Night”, “Pasko ng Bayan”), movie viewing, fireworks display (New Year’s Eve) and many more, which draws in many tourists.
Passengers in buses and other public conveyances are often mesmerized by the Christmas tree, lights and decorations. Many passersby stop by and take photos. As such, this initiative boosts business activities as well.
This year, there are more white lights that contrast with the traditional Christmas colors red and green. The tree, which is about two storeys tall, is framed by iron bars, wires, a pole and bamboo. There are standees of Saint Nick and a snowman.
The event also presents the Christmas trees from each competing barangay, which were made out of native and/or recycled materials.
After taking photos, you may also enjoy the food. As of this time, there are street foods and Christmas foods (in the Philippines, there are goodies considered Christmas fares), such as “Puto Bungbong” and “Bibingkang Galapong”.
Although “Simbang Gabi” (Nightly Mass — some during the wee hours of the morning — starts every December 16) has not yet started, the Cabangan Christmas tree and lights are worth seeing.