When the clarion call for the 55th Annual Hijos de Davao Ball was sounded last June 29, 2019, all roads seemed to lead to the SMX Convention Center of SM Lanang Premier. The attendance and participation of the stylish, well-dressed guests comprised of the Consular Corps of Mindanao, government officials, business leaders, dignitaries, the glitterati and “who’s who” in Davao’s social scene were welcomed by the officers of the Nuevo Hijos de Davao led by the organization’s respected Director of the Board, lawyer Rose Marie T. Cabaguio and President Vincent J. Garcia. Sadly, Vincent J. Garcia ends his term serving Hijos de Davao this year as he assumes his new role as Congressman.
Indeed, the religious tradition in the celebration of San Pedro’s day continues to be observed so devotedly. At the same time, the glorious event allows the descendants of the pioneering families and the migrants from all over the country who came to settle in the “Land of Promise” to honor their forebears and trade wonderful, important, heartfelt stories of their family’s past and present. It is a scheduled once-a-year grand reunion of sorts in these days when families are scattered all over the country or abroad. The days of two or three generations living under one roof or even in the same neighborhood are gone.
The Nuevo Hijos de Davao, as the late tito Rogelio “Noning” Lizada would have it, “embraces the people who have decided to make Davao their home…the new Dabawenyos…Where the previous organizations (Hijos de Mindanao y Sulu, Tayo-tayo Circle and Club Davawenyo) were based on regional origin, the Nuevo Hijos de Davao is based on residence. Ten continuous years of residence in Davao qualifies one as a member.”
Hijos de Davao President Vincent J. Garcia should be congratulated for his leadership especially in the Hijos de Davao Cultural project which sponsored Davao’s talented young designers in patronizing and utilizing Davao’s 11 tribes’ painstakingly handwoven fabrics of life in their tribal-inspired fashion creations. The “Colors of Davao Fashion Show” presented as opening number during the celebration had the past muses of Hijos de Davao, led by Sandra Lozano-Celestial (Hijos de Davao Muse 1971) in an Alfonso Guino-o original, as models for the designers’ haute couture tribal collection.
Crowned as Hijos de Davao Muse 2019 was Alessandra Dominique Allado. She is the daughter of Yuri Cabaguio Allado and Roselle Papa Allado. The young lady is a graduate of the International School of Manila and will soon continue her studies at the Duke University in North Carolina, USA. The muse was escorted by Caye Alessandro Rabat Francisco, the son of SEC Commissioner JV Paul and Kara Francisco during the affair.
This year’s traditional Rigodon de Honor was participated in by 22 pairs led by Cabinet Secretary Karlo Alexie Bendigo Nograles with partner Congresswoman Mylene Garcia-Albano, and Congressman Vincent J. Garcia and USEC. Antonette C. Tionko. Thank you, veteran maestra Ma. Lourdes Jocelyn Solis-Pineda for the patience and dedication in teaching the Hijos de Davao rigodon participants the dance steps through all these years.
All in all, the Hijos de Davao 55th Anniversary celebration was a fun-filled way of promoting goodwill, understanding, and peace amongst Davaoenos. Remember, we are one in saying, “Dabawnon kita lahat, Matu-od madumdumun, Pangga-on ikaw nami, Maski hain pa kami, Dabaw kinabuhi ko.”
Congratulations to all the Hijos de Davao officers, Board Members, and members of the various committees for a job done well.