Bacolod, a big city in Negros Occidental province in Western Visayas, Philippines, is famous for its diverse culinary heritage with dishes such as Napoleones, Beef Cansi, Inasal na manok, Masskara Chicken, Islaw, Batchoy,… that is considered a culinary paradise for domestic and foreign tourists. In addition, thanks to the masskara festival with the friendliness of the Bacolodons, this city is also known as the “city of smiles”.Masskara, which is a vibrant and lively traditional festival, is a unique combination of music, colors and dance. It is held regularly on the fourth Sunday of October every years in the Philippines and has over 40 years of history. The name “Masskara” is a combination of English and Spanish, in which “Mass” means “many” and “kara” is “smile”, so it can be roughly understood as many smiles. The name is also the theme of the festival so the participating dancers will dress up and wear a smiley mask on the day of the performance. On the other hand, Masskara is a famous and big festival in the Philippines so the dance groups often have 3 months to prepare.
Masskara and other festivals are often held on a large scale and a brilliant way because of the concept of Filipinos in general and Bacolodons in particular through organizing to express gratitude to the souls that play a role in keeping their lives full and fortunate. At the same time, the influence of the Spanish catholic culture in the past has the presence of saints on holidays. After all, these festivals have become the culture and tradition of Filipinos.
Back to Bacolod, this city was officially established on June 18th, 1938, due to inclement weather, the inauguration ceremony was moved to October 19th of the same year, which is also the reason why Bacolod was organized incorrectly on October 19th during 80 years from 1938 to 2018, and last year (2019) was the first year Bacolod was officially implemented on its founding date.
Bacolod has achieved some success over 81 years, here are the achievements in the past 2019:
- On December 16th, Bacolod capped its winning streak with two awards as The Most Competitive Highly Urbanized City in Western Visayas in terms of Economic Dynamism and Infrastructure
- The Best-Performing City in Western Visayas during the 2019 Excellence in Local Governance Awards of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG)-6 on December 3rd.
- Bacolod was recognized as a national awardee of the coveted DILG Seal of Good Local Governance (SGLG) as well as the recipient of the Tourism Award of the Year at the Asia Leaders Awards.
- The Most Business-Friendly Local Government Unit Awards
- The trophy as Top Philippine Model City for 2019 given by The Manila Times in September.
Today is the 82th anniversary of the founding of Bacolod City. Congratulations to Bacolod city! Congratulations to Bacolodons!