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MASSKARA 2012 sparked my love for festivals

I was on Libertad-Araneta Streets in the afternoon of Oct.21,2012 fighting off the tears.

I have long discounted going to big festivals thinking that crowds are too much for me to handle not realizing what I was missing all this time.Then in the middle of lively music,the enthusiastic crowd and the energy of the street dancers parading colorful masks,it engulfed me.It was the feeling of being there,laying witness to merrymaking this grand that the feeling was overwhelming.It was sheer joy that almost brought me to tears.

Masskara 2012 sparked my love for festivals!

 Masskara 2012

More so when I learned about the history of Masskara,that it was a result of tragic events in Bacolod and Negros that I came to admire the unbreakable spirit of the Negrenses and Balodians in particular.


"One of the happiest festival in the country, it rose from the gloom that enveloped the city in 1980s, a period of tragedy and economic dislocation.

During this period, the prices of sugar in the world market were at an all-time low. Negrenses, including Bacolenos, were in a crisis as the province only relied in the sugar industry then.
The depression was further aggravated when passenger vessel Don Juan sank on April 22, where an estimated 700 Negrenses, including prominent families, perished.

In the midst of these tragic events, the city’s artists, local government and civic groups decided to hold a festival of smiles, because the city at that time was also known as the City of Smiles.
They reasoned that a festival was also a good opportunity to pull the residents out of the pervasive gloomy atmosphere. The initial festival was therefore, a declaration by the people of the city that no matter how tough and bad the times were, Bacolod City is going to pull through, survive, and in the end, triumph.

This act of collectively fighting back at life’s troubles is embodied in the MassKara Streetdancing lyrics: Sige lang… sige na! Bacolod bato kita! (It’s okay… it’s alright! No matter what adversity, Bacolod fights on!)"

The festival has evolved through the years in it's not just the street dance that people look forward too.There's Electric Masskara,Giant Masskara Puppets,Majica Masskara and Masskara Queen.

Media Pass/ID's

I would like to thank my roommate Ed for lending me his media I'd.If not,such wonderful shots would have been impossible.If you are thinking of capturing amazing picture,I highly suggest you secure a media pass/ photographer's ID.

A PHOTO CONTEST is staged every year during Masskara Festival

here's how to acquire a Masskara photographer's ID:

1. This contest is open to all professional and amateur photographers. Camera Club of Negros members are not allowed to join the contest.
2. Contest entry fee of P500.00, inclusive of the photographer’s ID.

Registrater at:
The Camera Bug, Lopues East Center Annex building, Circumferential Road, Brgy. Villamonte, Bacolod City, Negros Occidental.
4. For photographers outside of Bacolod City, entry form is available to download at
5.You will then be asked to deposit the amount to a bank account then claim it when you get to Bacolod.

Read more on Byahilo's Blog:


Street & Arena Dance Competition BARANGAY CATEGORY

CHAMPION: Barangay 17
1st  Runner Up:  Barangay Cabug
2nd Runner Up:  Barangay 6
3rd Runner Up:  Barangay 32
4th Runner Up:  Barangay Alijis


And here's to one of the Crowd Favorites: Barangay 16 , which I could not understand why they didn't get any award.hmmmmm

 DSC_9943  DSC_9946  DSC_9944-2
For those who are planning to go to Bacolod next year, here's how to  get there via Iloilo:-----Iloilo-Bacolod via ferry + TO GO TRAVEL ferry schedule .
 Giant Masskara Puppets.That Dolphy effigy was 2012's winner 
and this guy is a cigarette vendor--- in Masskara Mode! :)

Yes,it was still tough for me to brave big crowds and I felt really tired afterwards but all the hard work is nothing compared to the joy that I felt.I was in Bacolod for only three days but it was three days of fun.

I will be blogging more about the experience in the next few days as the street dance highlight was just one aspect of it.More on the 1.dinner with fellow bloggers 1.the cake indulgence in Calea 3.The Silay Tour with bloggers 4.The Globe Tattoo Rooftop Party and the 5.Party over Lacson Street on our last night.
You can follow all my Masskara 2012 related posts here.

I love Bacolod.I love Masskara Festival!Thank you for the wonderful memories!
AIRPHILEXPRESS is the official airline of

NOTE: Effective October 28, 2012, Flights for Manila departing for and arriving from Bacolod, Cebu, Davao, General Santos, Iloilo, Laoag, and Tagbilaran will be operated by code-share partner Philippine Airlines. Please book your tickets to these destinations at


  1. ang colorful tlga ng festival na yan kakaproud maging pinoy

  2. Hoy, Antonio Carranza Jr. wahehehe XD

    wow, epic tong mga shots mo sa Maskara festival. I can't believe sa gara ng anyo at designs ng mga costumes/mask ng mga participants!


  3. great photos! if you loved Masskara, you would also bask in the electric atmosphere during Kadayawan! do let me know if you'd come for a visit next year :)

  4. yung eksenang makikita mo ang mask sa festival na todo ngiti na nakaka good vibes! nakakahawa ang smile ng maskara!

  5. dami na palang nangyari dito.. 10 years na.. :P gusto ko rin to puntahan.. i belong here because i have a everlasting smile.. lol.. pwede ngang endorser ng toothpaste diba.. wahahah

  6. the guy selling cigarettes is always present during Masskara festival every year.. I even had one picture with him 2 to 3 years back.. artista din to si manong during the event itself marami nagpapapicture hehe

  7. ang ganda ng shots! makes me wanna visit Bacolod for the next maskara festival!:)

    i followed your blog! hope you can visit and follow mine too!

    Thanks! :)

  8. Lovely shots! Colorful... Sana ma-witness ko yang festival na yan next schedule festival time. This is really a must in Negros!

  9. hi poh sir... marami pang mga magagandang festival sa bacolod....
    la castella - banana festival and bailes de luces
    kabankalan - sinulog de kabankalan festival
    la carlota - pasalamat festival
    cadiz - dinagsa festival
    heheheh... mag-eenjoy poh kau sobra...


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